Bionic Girl: Doctors Baffled By 7-Year-Old Girl’s Genetic Mutations

Olivia Farnsworth has doctors calling her the bionic girl due to a very rare medical condition. The bionic girl’s condition is so rare that doctors speculate that she may be the only girl on the planet to be the way she is. A genetic mutation called a chromosome six deletion allows her to not feel pain, not get hungry, and not get tired.

The bionic girl had her abilities tested when she was hit by a car. Olivia’s mother talks about the horror she felt when Olivia was struck by the car.

“She was dragged about 10 car lengths down the road. It was horrendous, I don’t think it’s something I will never get over. I was screaming and all my other children were screaming as she ran out. But Olivia was just like, ‘What’s going on?’ Because of the impact she should have had severe injuries. She had a tire mark on her chest. But her only injuries were she had no skin on her toe or her hip. The doctors think what saved her from injury was she didn’t tense up.”

It did not take long for Olivia’s mother to realize that she was not like other children. At nine months old, nap time was no longer needed for the bionic girl. Olivia would not get tired and would figure out ways to manipulate her mother to not have to go to sleep at night. Because she can’t feel pain, Olivia would not have any fear of getting hurt. Her first bad injury happened when she was attending nursery school. She had fallen and her teeth ended up cutting through her bottom lip. The injury was so bad that Olivia needed to see a plastic surgeon to fix her. It was then that a doctor examined her and realized that Olivia had some sort of condition that was extremely rare.

“She had to have plastic surgery and when the surgeon was examining her, he was pulling her lip and she wasn’t even flinching. He said to me, there’s something not right about her.”

There is no cure for the genetic mutation of the bionic girl. The only thing that doctors can do is give her medication to make her body do the things that it is supposed to do. Since Olivia does not experience getting tired, she needs to take prescription sleeping pills in order to get her to go to sleep. Since she does not feel hunger, Olivia has been taught to eat.

Olivia’s mother also speaks about how Olivia has violent outburst on occasion. Since she does not feel pain, her outbursts usually lead to physical violence.

“She’s head-butted me, punched and kicked me and can have outbursts of swearing which can be embarrassing if we’re out in public.”

Olivia’s mother was able to discover a support group online that deals with different types of chromosome disorders and mutations. The support group is called Unique, and their website can be found here. Olivia’s mother is using the support group in conjunction with other types of media outlets in order to raise awareness for chromosome problems. Chief executive Dr. Beverly Searle is a former research biologist who spoke about the bionic girl.

“There may not be anybody out there the same as Olivia”

Doctors and researchers have found up to 15,000 people who suffer from different types of chromosome disorders. Only 100 people have been identified to have the deletion of the sixth chromosome that Oliva has.

Even though Olivia is called the bionic girl, her life will not be that of a superhero. The inability to feel pain is dangerous since pain is the body’s way of saying something is wrong.

What are your thoughts on Olive, the bionic girl?

[Image Via Zappy’s Technology Solutions/Flickr/CC BY 2.0]