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April 14, 2007


Clawfoot Bathtubs

mmm uhh...


Thank freaking god.


I guess I'll skip lunch...thanks.


The crucial difference is that Romania has joined the EU and is now accountable to very high standards with respect to the treatment of its citizens. I suspect it's a bit of a culture shock for them. Imagine Haiti suddenly becoming the 51st State of the US. I assume the Romanian authorities were acutely embarrassed by the man's condition and, if truth be told, by the fact that primary health care was being provided by a missionary (I happen to think the missionary is doing a great job). If it was to become widely known that within an EU state, the only health care available for an EU citizen, was provided by an American missionary-lets put it this way-the Romanians would be disgraced. Hence, the magical appearance of the ambulance.

The Romanians are probably open to an action in the European Court of Human Rights for their failure to provide primary health care for the man. I know many in the US are a bit fuzzy about the EU. However, since Romania joined the EU at the start of the year, this man's right are equal to those of any other European citizen, be they Jacques Chirac, Tony Blair, my mother, Kiera Knightly or Bono.

I don't want to discourage anyone from seeking aid for the man in the US, but all those advanced tratments are available; literally, up the road in places like Austria, Germany and Denmark. Putting pressure on the man's local MEP and alerting the institutions of the EU is probably the best route. I put links on the earlier blog posting if you want to contact the man's representatives.


could we make this an "after the jump" kind of a deal from now on? pretty please?


Well... the highest GDP per inhabitant in EU in 2004 is in Inner London region, with a 303% from average European GDP.

The lowest is in Romanian "Nord-Est" region, with just a 24%!

Holland Oats

my guess is he's a smoker and a rightie

Jesse Hawkins

The pictures of the man's hands reminded me of a article I saw a few weeks a back about rabbits infected with a papillomavirus, specifically the Shope papillomavirus. I started looking for the rabbit article, and upon finding it I noticed that the article had been updated to include a picture of the man's hands from this article! The article I am talking about is here: One of the links in that article points to a collection of images of rabbits that have growths that seem to (to me at least) resemble the growths on the man hands. The images are located here:

I don't think I am shedding any light on this matter, as most of this information is already available with some simple Googleing, however it might be an interesting read for anyone looking for more information about what they are seeing.


I agree with the above comment about medical care in the EU - as much as any US based help may seem necessary, it might be better to question the European people in charge of this. This will help more in the long run and will prevent any useless travels of medicine between the US and Romania, too.

We're not some backwards continent, after all. =) It's just that eastern European countries were on the other side of the Iron Curtain for a long time, and have developed slower because of this. The effects can still very easily be spotted if one were to travel to eastern Europe, but luckily things should be improving now that we've formed a union.

Money may be handy in this particular case, but as said in the blog itself, the man or his family don't seem to be in any need of additional money at the moment. If this were necessary in the future, I suppose one could always donate. =)

Now, I'm going to tend to that itch on my head that's been manifesting itself since I started reading this. *shudder* I hope the man's going to be able to feel better about his hands some day.


I don't think this story as simple.
As far as I understand from the articles (there are much more than the three you posted), a reporter from a local newspaper in Galati traveled to nearby Schela village, talked to the sick man and then started a campaign in the newspaper to raise funds to have the man sent to treatment. The reporter also contacted various state and health authorities to get help for this issue.
Only after a month did the reporter succeed to convince a hospital to have the man interned - all this campaign took place without the knowledge of the sick man, that's why he didn't knew about the ambulance sent for him.
He was taken to a hospital in Bucharest, were he was investigated and found to have a gene disease which can not be fully cured, but through a surgical procedure they hope to at least make him able to use his fingers again.
Also, it turns out that the man had also been investigated back in 2000 and he should have been operated then. Unfortunately the cost of the intervention (about $ 8500) was not covered by his health insurance and he should have paid it himself; but he couldn't afford it, so he remained like this.


Thanks for the update! Seems that the ball is rolling on bringing this man back to normal life. I'm very glad! Please keep us posted about the improvements to his hands.

Thanks again for the follow up!


I don't really have a medical background or know what has been discussed over this topic, but I may be so bold as to point out something. It seems to me that this keratin-like matter is more like the gene for growing finger and two nails is wrong. I have reviewed some photos and it looks like the growth is "stronger" if you will near where nails would normally grow. Could the gene controlling nail growth be in effect coded wrong in his body? thereby not limiting its (I guess?) rate of growth and where it grows. It might be something to lacate and isolate all the genes that produce and control keratin for nail growth.


I think the keratin growth is caused by warts, but I suspect you're half right, in the fact that the keratin growth is more vigerous near the areas where nail growth would normally occur.

He has skin growths or warts on other areas of his body, such as his face, however they don't appear to sprout the keratin matter.


The first article inspired this amazing song by Kate Ferencz:

Marisa Reber

I have a horse she is only about a year and a half in the United States that has the same kind of growth coming out of her ear I have had vetrinarians look at it but no one seems to know what it is. It seems to be very aggressive it has tripled in size in three weeks and seems to be growing more. I am having another opinion come out to look at the growth but seeing the hands on this man it looks exactly the same. The vet I am having come out is coming from a distance and is interested so maybe she wont just say its a wort and leave it at that. My thing is to find out what it is.


Marisa, regarding the horse I'm surprised your vet has said he doesn't know what it is. After seeing this thing about the hands I have heard that horny growths from a horse's ear is not too uncommon, and also that they should be surgically removed.


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I always pay much attention to this poor Romanian man. Poor him. I was really moved when i saw the article on the Internet. I can't imagine this situation can happen to the human like us. But nothing is impossible. God bless him. He looks better now and hopefully his treatment will be effective and he can come back to a normal life. Peace.


Romania overall is uneducated. I wouldn't want medical treatment there for anything, I wouldn't even take my pet there to get care. poor guy


It a real shame how rare genetic diseases such as this can often go unoticed in these poor countries, i'm sure if he was a citizen in a wealthy country something would have been done about this a long time ago and long before the disease took hold and got the level it is at.

How many more people are there that we dont know about, i for one know of one other person with this same disease.

His name is Dede from Sumatra, he was recently in an Article in a Magazine called "Bizarre"

If something can be done for this guy in Rominia then i'm sure something could be done for the guy in sumatra who judging by the pictures in the magazine is at a far more advanced stage of this terrible disease. I hope this man fully recovers and can then go on to lead a normal life which he is perfectly entitled to.

I CANNOT UNSEEN WHAT I HAVE SEEN. Fucking christ man, this is one thing I never wish I had seen in my entire life. I have seen absolutely horrible and unspeakable things on internet but nothing has sicken and disgusted me to the core like this one has. Why the fuck am I so pissed off? Because I'm going to have nightmares about this for who the fuck nows how long, shit man some things really are better not being publicized. Ugh fuck, I still can't get over how absolutely sickening it is.

It looks like The Thing! Awesome!


i feel moved and touched by this tradgic tale of woe and dispair. myself, my wife and all of my family do so hope that you can be helped to find someone who loves you for what is on the inside.just remember its not abot your disgusting looks on the outside its the inside that matters


i feel moved and touched by this tradgic tale of woe and dispair. myself, my wife and all of my family do so hope that you can be helped to find someone who loves you for what is on the inside.just remember its not abot your disgusting looks on the outside its the inside that matters


I was reading a medical abstract today, It concerned the treatment of a 16 year old boy with Epidermodysplasia Verruciformis. The doctors opted for:

"oral acitretin at 0.75mg/kg/day and interferon alpha-2a, 3,000,000IU subcutaneously, three times a week. After 30 days, over 50% of the lesions had disappeared, especially on the trunk, and of the remnant, approximately 40% diminished in thickness, with good tolerance. After six months, we observed almost full regression, thus suspended interferon alpha-2a and reduced acitretin to 0.5mg/kg/day, which is still maintained."

This might be an option worth considering in this man's treatment

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