A one-year-old baby in the Philippines is battling to survive after being born with a large tumour on her head that looks like a coconut.
Juliane Faye Tagudina was diagnosed with the rare bone disorder encephalocele when she was born and the soft mass was seen attached to her head.
The birth defect prevented part of her skull from fully developing and closing, causing some of the fluids and brain membrane to pour out.
Her mother, housewife Joy, 32, is now desperate for her daughter to have surgery but cannot afford it as her husband is unable to find work as a builder because of the pandemic.
Joy, from Iloilo City, said: ‘I feel sorry for my child every time I look at her. She doesn’t deserve it. There are some good people who help us. I hope we can save enough for her treatment.’
The mother-of-two added that she never had a prenatal check-up prior to giving birth because her husband lost her job during the lockdown.
She said: ‘I was shocked when I gave birth and saw her head because I never went to the doctor. My husband had lost his job and I had to give birth in a smaller clinic.’
With the help of neighbours and good Samaritans Juliane was able to have a CT scan but the doctor’s decision whether she could push through with the surgery will be based on the result.
Encephalocele is treated with surgery to place the protruding part of the brain and the membranes covering it back into the skull and close the opening in it.
Joy said: ‘I hope my daughter could finally be treated. I want her to grow up normally like other children and have a normal life.’