Infected mosquito bite leaves man with a leg five times its normal size [photos]

Infected mosquito bites from more than two decades ago left a Cambodian man's leg five times its normal size due to an untreatable parasitic disease.

Bong Thet, 27, is forced to drag the painful limb along the ground as he shuffles around his family home in Kampong Chhnang province.

He once dreamed of being a footballer but has not been able to kick a ball properly since the illness started when he was just six-years-old.

Bong said the tumour developed from small wounds on his foot, which his parents ignored because they thought the scratches were from playing outside.

However, small lumps grew around his foot and completely covered his leg by the time he reached 12-years-old.

His parents, who were working in a nearby factory, were unable to afford the medical treatment in the poverty-stricken country so his condition worsened over the years.

He had to stop going to school because it was difficult for him to walk long distances. Even when he did bravely attend, the other children were constantly teasing him about his leg.

The sick man endured his illness for more than two decade without seeing specialists, until good Samaritans heard of his story and offered to pay for his treatment earlier this month.

Businesswoman Dana Try gave 10,000,000 Cambodia Riel (around £1,900). The cash paid for Bong's medical expenses and was able to visit a hospital for the first time.

After conducting a blood check up, the doctors found that he has Lymphatic filariasis, a parasitic disease caused by thread-like worms.

They said it is possible that he contracted the parasites through mosquito bites which he scratched and bled when he was young, thus the wounds.

It is one of the leading causes of disability in the world, but there is no known vaccine or cure for the disease yet.

Bong was disheartened when he learned that the disease was incurable, but he was still thankful to people who gave him donations.

This will make my life easier and knowing that there are people who care for me makes me feel happy, he said.
I am so grateful for them to helping. The money will pay for medicine and food. I will continue to take the medication given to me by the doctors which will make my life more comfortable.

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