A seven-year-old boy is currently battling to stay alive, after a rare disease left him with a stomach that looks like an oversized bag of potatoes.
Physicians who have examined him say his condition was cause by bilateral pleural effusion — an inflammatory condition which causes a large build-up of fluid.
The seven-year-old is so skinny that just his bones are visible, while his stomach has protruded so much that he is now unable to stand on his feet, much less move around.
He also throws up food every time he attempts to eat, reports say.
Doctors have said the only way to keep him alive will be through surgery.
His worried foster parents say the boy is in constant pain, yet the stomach continues to grow bigger by the day.
“His stomach is growing bigger and bigger and we fear if he does not get any help, we will lose him soon,” his worried guardians say.
The couple, from Barpeta in Assam, India, had adopted seven-year-old Shahanur Alam when he was just seven-months-old.
Until two years ago when he complained to his parents of intense pain in his abdomen, Shahanur Alam was a very healthy boy.
While, at first, they brushed it off as an infection at first, the couple soon realised their son had a bigger problem as his stomach started growing abnormally.
The doctors referred the child to other hospitals but none of the local doctors could diagnose his condition.
Instead, they sent the parents back home with medication to reduce his pain – but they had no effect on the swelling.
As time went by Alam’s condition kept deteriorating. He stopped going to school as walking was painful and lost weight because of undernourishment.
The desperate parents sold off all their belongings and took him to an advanced hospital in another state for diagnosis.
There, doctors conducted tests and found he had a build-up of fluid in his abdomen and sludge in gall bladder that had thickened the wall.
They told Salim and his wife that the only way possible to save their son would be an operation but that would cost £2,400.
Shamela added: “We had no money for the operation so we brought him back home.
‘We have already exhausted all our savings and spend £20-30 a month on his medicines,” journalist reports.