By Angela Thompson, Illawarra Mercury, August 2, 2008


Leigh Scully and Baxter. Photo by SYLVIA LIBER

To the outside world, Baxter Scully looks like a serious boy, but it is not only his tender years that are stopping him from telling people how he is really feeling. 

For the boy who cannot smile, misunderstanding is a danger every day, even for his own mother. 

Baxter, of Cambewarra, was born with a mask-like face as a result of moebius syndrome – abnormally developed cranial nerves. 

A clear-cut diagnosis has been difficult for Baxter’s parents to come by because, unlike other children with moebius syndrome, he has none of the other telltale signs such as hand and feet abnormalities, respiratory problems and weak upper body strength. 

His mother Leigh Scully is grateful her son’s condition is confined to what doctors call bilateral facial paralysis, but she hopes scientists may one day unlock enough of the secrets of the human body to make Baxter’s condition history. 

On Jeans for Genes Day, yesterday, it was a denim-only affair at the Scully household.  

“Developmentally Dexter’s been doing all his milestones, but even when he’s laughing – he might be chuckling away at something – you wouldn’t know,” Mrs Scully said.  

“His face would just go bright red and his jaw would drop but there was no change in facial expression. 

“If Baxter goes on to have children, it could happen to his children.  

“The more research the better.”

Entire article here.

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