Meet Olivia Farnsworth, a British girl who doesnt feel any pain and never feels the need to eat or sleep. At age seven, shes able to go for days without sleeping and eating, and comes away from terrible injuries with nonchalance. In fact, she was recently run over and dragged down the street by a car, but she casually walked away from the accident without shedding a tear!
Olivia has doctors baffled. They know she suffers from a condition caused by something called chromosome 6 deletion, but this is the first time theyve witnessed anyone displaying three rare symptoms at once. According to her mother Niki Trepak, the little girl has no sense of danger because she literally cannot feel pain, and neither does she feel the need to sleep or eat. Her doctors have nicknamed her bionic girl, while her mother says shes made of steel.
She got run over and dragged down the street by a car and she didnt complain, Niki said, shortly after the accident. It was horrendous, I dont think its something I will ever get over. I was screaming and all my other children were screaming as she ran out. But Olivia was just like, Whats going on? She just got up and started walking back to me.
Niki also added that Olivia should have been severely injured by the impact as she had a tire mark over her chest, but she got away with only losing skin on her toe and hip. Her doctors think that she was able to escape injury because she didnt tense up like other people normally would under such circumstances. And this isnt the first time Olivia has acted strangely calm after getting hurt. She also once fell badly and ripped her lip off and didnt say anything, Niki recalled. She had to have major plastic surgery to correct it.
Getting Olivia to eat right is also a challenge, because she doesnt get hungry She became a really fussy eater and would have nothing but milk shakes, Niki said. At the moment, its chicken noodles. She lived on butter sandwiches for about a year. She doesnt feel hunger so I cant threaten her like other children by saying if you dont eat that youll not get this as she isnt bothered.
Her third superpower is that she doesnt feel tired. She once went three consecutive days and nights with no sleep, said Niki. As a single mum of five its really hard. Shes never tired. We have to give her medication to get her to sleep.
Although shes a happy child most of the time, Niki says that Olivia can suffer from violent outbursts from time to time. Shes head-butted me, punched and kicked me and can have outbursts of swearing which can be embarrassing if were out in public, the mother-of-five said. It happened in a park the other week and people were wondering whats going on. They dont know whats wrong. Everybody laughs because shes so wild and extreme. She says lets jump off here and all the other children are like, Thats way too high!
This is why I want to raise awareness on chromosome 6 problems. To look at Olivia you dont know anythings wrong with her. There are apparently 15,000 registered cases of chromosome disorder worldwide, but only 100 of them have the 6p deletion that Olivia has.
There may not be anybody out there the same as Olivia, said Dr. Beverly Searle, former research biologist and chief executive of chromosome disorder support group Unique. You cant treat chromosome disorders but what we can do is alleviate the symptoms. We try to find matches and provide information for families, which can be great for friendship and local support.
Niki insists that her daughter isnt a freak she says that despite her superhuman toughness, Olivia is the most loving among her five children. Shell be the first to share sweets with you. Shes got the best personality. Shes just crazy, but in a good way.