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The following material contains graphic images of an actual surgery that may be disturbing. Parents are advised that these images may not be suitable for young children.
Earlier this season, we met Lucas, who was born with a rare lymphangioma tumor on his face and by the age of 10 has undergone 24 surgeries but none of them were successful in treating the tumor.
He told us that he has had to endure a slew of health problems related to the tumor including blurred vision, a burst eardrum, and extreme pain that persists from morning until night.
After his first appearance, he was treated by Dr. Gregory Levitin, surgeon and Director of Vascular Birthmarks and Malformations Program at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai, who said his case was probably the most challenging he has ever taken on. Following the surgery, Lucas is happy to tell us that much of his pain has been alleviated.
"It's a just a whole different world," he tells us. "Not having that weight on you is completely different... it's something that I never thought would happen and it happened. It's changed pretty much everything for the better." He goes on to say that he is now able to sleep through the night and he feels like each day his life gets better and better.
Lucas's mom Sheri says the change in her son has been "amazing." Before the surgery, she says Lucas was taking up to 100 Ibuprofen per week and now he is not taking any. Also since the surgery, Lucas has become more independent and has moved out of his mother's house.
Dr. Levitin explains that for many patients with large tumors that it can be an extreme drain on the body and when it is removed they find they have increased energy, better sleep and can have a complete change in their quality of life.