Ignacio has been a Fresh Start patient since 2007 – when he first came to Fresh Start, he was very embarrassed and depressed about his condition. Ignacio was born with a large hairy nevus, or birthmark, on his right cheek. Ignacio had a large family of 9 and they could not afford for him to receive treatment for his condition. Although the nevus wasn’t life threatening, it still made life extremely difficult for Ignacio. When applying to the Fresh Start program, Ignacio wrote to Fresh Start, “I get very depressed sometimes and I feel like a monster for the whole world. Sometimes people call me the wolf man. It is very difficult to find a job because of my condition.”
Ignacio was 18 when he first began receiving medical care from Fresh Start, and he had already endured a childhood full of teasing and mocking. Since becoming part of the Fresh Start program, Ignacio has now received 3 reconstructive surgeries, 11 laser treatments, and countless additional follow-ups and consultations. In total, Ignacio has received $37,666.29 in donated medical care from Fresh Start’s volunteer surgeons, anesthesiologists, and other medical professionals. Ignacio is scheduled to have another laser treatment at Fresh Start’s upcoming Surgery Weekend on March 18, 2012.
Ignacio’s time with Fresh Start is now almost complete, and he has gained so much confidence and improved self-esteem through the Fresh Start Program. Even a non life-threatening condition like a hairy nevus can make a child’s or young adult’s life full of pain and confusion, and these are the children who are often forgotten and fall through the cracks of other healthcare programs.