Conquering Age: The Challenging Journey of an Indian Man, True Iron Strength, Confined to the Age of 25.

Conquering Age: The Challenging Journey of an Indian Man, True Iron Strength, Confined to the Age of 25.

Lying in a cot, Kumari Kunti is little bigger than a toddler.She spends her days in bed, unable to move and reliant on her mother for all her needs.

But while she leads the life of an infant, she in fact 25 years old.

Miss Kunti is suffering from a heartbreaking condition which has caused her bones to curve and shrink over the past decade.

Previously four feet, she has now shrunk to just two feet tall and is completely helpless.

A doctor who has examined her case believes she may have osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) – or brittle bone disease.

She is hoping to see doctors in bigger cities in India who could help treat her condition, allowing her to walk again.

Miss Kunti, who lives in a rural village in Chatra, in India’s eastern state Jharkhand, began having trouble with weak bones at age nine.

The disease progressed until eight years ago she lost all movement and is now bed-bound.

Her mother Devi Tilakwa, 60, who lost her husband 12 years ago, cannot stop weeping over her daughter’s condition, which she says makes her look like a ‘corpse’.

Ms Tilakwa said: ‘She was a normal girl with healthy limbs but when she turned a teenager, her bones started weakening and she struggled to walk.

‘She would limp a little but gradually she lost all strength and started shrinking.

‘Within eight years of this mysterious disease, she completely lost strength and got bound to bed rest.’

OI is caused by a genetic mutation that affects how the body produces collagen – a main component of connective tissues found throughout the body.

The lack of collagen means sufferers have curved bones that fracture easily and muscle weakness – although the disease’s severity differs from person to person.

Miss Kunti whose older siblings – two brothers and one sister – are unaffected, first began showing symptoms in 2007.

Her left leg was terribly weak and she had an operation to strengthen it.

But after a month of relief, her condition started deteriorating and she lost strength in all her limbs.

Miss Kunti said: ‘I was always weak and could never run fast. I was a slow walker and as I grew up, I had to push my left leg.

‘This is when my mother took me to a doctor for treatment. The bone specialist operated on my left leg but after a month, I couldn’t move the leg.’


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