Top image: A 17-year-old girl with a similar disease called neurofibromatosis.
Elephant man Leong Chee Ming's only hope for a normal life was to remove the tumours on his face.
"I don't want to be an elephant man any more!" he told Chinese dailies.
The 43-year-old from Serdang, Selangor, had a miserable childhood. He did not go to school as he was a slow learner. He only learnt to walk when he was 10.
At 14, the red mark which he was born with began to grow bigger on his face and it became tumours, blocking his eyesight and impeding his speech.
"Two years later, we sent him for two operations to remove the tumours but they grew bigger than before," said Leong's mother Hee Thye Tai, a 68-year-old helper at a mixed-rice stall.
"He dares not go out of the house. People laugh at him and bully him but I have never thought of dumping my son although taking care of him is no easy task.
"He is my flesh and blood. I hope to see him recover and live like a normal person."
Serdang MCA chairman Datuk Liew Yuen Keong and Wanita chief Senator Chew Lee Giok visited the mother and son on Tuesday.
Liew said he had made arrangements for Leong to seek treatment at KL Hospital. "We will help him to live a normal life."