CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) — A Chapel Hill man spent years suffering from a rare genetic condition that went undiagnosed and was never properly treated.
As a result, 33-year-old Chad Horton said he was unable to get a job because of the way he looked. he had tumors and cysts all over his face.
"Here and here they were the size of a pencil eraser, and all around here on my face," Horton said.
Over the years Horton’s family had taken him to different doctors, but none seemed to know what was causing the benign tumors and cysts to spread.
"The family just gets told, he got something that’s rare, basically it’s just something that’s rare, they don’t know what it is," Dr. Charlie Finn said.
Meanwhile, Horton said his appearance prevented him from finding a job, despite his willingness to work.
"The saddest thing is when you get called in for an interview and as soon as you get there it’s ‘oh we hired someone already," Horton said.
Then, a group of local doctors came together to help Horton for free. The doctors were willing to help Horton and foot the bills themselves for his diagnosis and treatment.
They sent Horton to a dermatologist named Dr. Becker, who diagnosed the problem and then partnered with Finn Facial Plastics to remove the cysts.
Dr. Finn has performed three surgeries on Horton using lasers to pare down the tumors. Horton is already pleased with the results.
"I can’t stay out the mirror. My family will tell you, every time they see me, I’m in the mirror," Horton said.
He still has one surgery left, then doctors want to try a different treatment.
"What Dr. Becker and I want to try is a course of Accutane therapy. Accutane is a powerful drug used to treat acne and chronic cystic conditions, but it’s a very expensive drug. He’ll need to be on this drug for about nine months and it will cost $400 a month for him," Dr. Finn said.
To help cover that cost, Dr. Finn’s office has set up a fund to help with treatment costs. anyone who would like to donate can visit the doctor’s website.
In the meantime, Horton is searching for a job. he said he would ideally like to be a truck driver so that he can see the world he has shied away from for so long for fear of people staring at his face.
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