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July 25, 2018

12-year-old boy's rare disease turning him to stone

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After being diagnosed with autism at the age of 2, Jaiden Rogers was diagnosed with stiff skin syndrome, which is steadily spreading throughout his body.

Jaiden Rogers was two years old when he was adopted by Natalie and Tim Rogers after his teenage mother was unable to take care of him.

At the tender age of two, he was diagnosed with autism. The Rogers took every effort in giving Jaiden a normal childhood and spent years teaching him to speak, as reported by People.

While Jaiden eventually blended into the family, he was six years old when Tim discovered an abnormality on his skin.

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Tim noticed that there was a spot on Jaiden’s thigh that had unusually hardened. The doting father shared that he and his wife were confused about the hardness, and it was a while before they received a conclusive medical diagnosis.

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What added to the worry of the Rogers was that they could not find information on anyone else having the same condition.

It turns out that 12-year-old Jaiden suffers from an extremely rare condition of stiff skin, which causes the patient’s body to harden. According to Natalie, touching the hardened part of the skin is like tapping on a countertop.

The first patch was found on his thigh, and soon, the hardness surfaced on areas like his stomach, back, and hips.

Apart from the effect on the skin, the condition also causes Jaiden to experience immense pain in the muscles and joints. Recently, the disease has also begun to affect his chest, making it difficult for the boy to breathe.

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Dr. Margarite Saenza, who works as a clinical geneticist overseeing Jaiden’s case at Children’s Hospital Colorado, described the hardening as scarring, in which the skin undergoes change at the fibrotic level.

The disease was first discovered in 1971, and although it is not known to be life-threatening, it may soon affect the chest and lung cavity among other internal organs.

The medical treatment for Jaiden’s condition has been expensive, and apart from mortgaging their home, the Rogers has set up a GoFundMe campaign for raising the necessary funds to cover the expenses.

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Natalia is concerned about Jaiden’s delicate condition and has suffered from severe illnesses herself.

She was diagnosed with Friedreich's Ataxia disease, which can fatally impact the nervous system, and lead to complications like diabetes, scoliosis or other cardiac illnesses.

Even in the face of these difficulties, Tim stated that the family was ready to do everything in their power to bring Jaiden back to health.

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