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Doctors working on rare genetic disorder in Orissa
Doctors in Cuttack are trying to cure 16- years-old Rebati who is suffering from idiopathic gingival (a rare genetic disorder), which has distorted her face. Meanwhile, her father has alleged that his and Rebati's blood samples have been stolen.

16 YEARS-old Rebati Kahara from Boudh district in Orissa, is suffering from a rare genetic disorder that has distorted her face, triggered excessive hair growth all over the body and left her with a swollen mouth.

Doctors at the SCB medical college and hospital, Cuttack, 25km from Bhubaneshwar, are working to cure the tribal girl with this genetic disorder that is termed as 'rarest of rare' in medical science.

After a media report by a local journalist Ramakanta Mahananda a group of doctors brought Rebati from her native village Khalisahi to the medical college hospital. Several surgeries were performed. According to the doctors attending her, Rebati still has to undergo a few more surgeries before she is completely cured of the genetic disorder.

Dr SK Narendra, one of the doctors attending her, said, "In medical terms, Rebati’s deformity is known as idiopathic gingival enlargement with hypertrichosis. It is a genetic deformity that has distorted her face. We have already started her treatment and she will be perfectly fine within a month."

The SCB medical college and hospital administration has decided to bear all expenses of her treatment. "We came to know about the case from the media and decided to take it up as it was quite challenging," said DN Moharana, the superintendent of the medical college.

Balakrishna Kanhr, the father of Rebati, had alleged that his daughter’s blood was being drawn for business purposes. Local police have registered a case under Section 379 and 120(B)

dealing with allegedly theft of blood sample of the girl and begun investigation. Father of the girl has alleged that a staff nurse named Malati Swain had come and drew blood from both him and his daughter, who is undergoing a series of surgeries. The nurse had said that she was doing so on instructions of treating surgeon Dr Narendra, he stated. But later, he came to know that Dr Narendra had not given any such instruction or permission. Swain had been deputed by Dr Pratima Sahoo of biochemistry department and the head of the newly set up biotechnology laboratory for the purpose.

"The blood was drawn with ulterior motives, Balakrushna complained," Mangalabag police officer-in-charge Pradyumna Jena said. Meanwhile, police started investigations into the case.

However, the hospital superintendent, DN Maharana, said the blood was collected as a part of a routine check but had led to confusion due to lack of communication between the two departments." The peculiar case of the 16-year-old tribal girl had prompted the biochemistry department to collect her blood samples for analysis at research laboratory. The doctors, on July 14, decided to conduct a genetic analysis to find out the DNA sequences of Rebati under the guidance of Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in collaboration with the Institute of Immunology, Mumbai.

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