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Getting older when you are just a baby- Progeria

February 22, 2009

We can help

I was watching TV few days ago , clicking in the Spanish channel Univision ,  I am trying  to improve my Spanish. Its always good to remember I am from Brazil , my mother’s language is Portuguese. By the way, I couldn‘t get out of that channel, they were playing an interview with the 15 years old girl, Yuleydi Féliz Jimenez , she suffers from aches as a woman 90 years old. She cannot walk anymore, she cannot see, she has deformed hands by arthritis.

The reporter said she can’t sleep because of severe pain in her body. Her skin shows that she has been living for decades , however, she is in her first decade of life. The girl suffers from a disease called Progeria.

 Progeria is an extremely rare genetic condition where symptoms resembling aspects of aging are manifested at an early age. One in 8 million babies are born with this disease, and most affected children usually die at around 13, although many have been known to live into their late teens and early twenties.

It is a genetic condition, but occurs as a new mutation (sporadically) and is not usually inherited, although there is one unique form of the condition identified in only one family in the world that is inherited from parents who carry the protein genetically. In this case, five children in the family had the condition.

The disease causes the affected each year by age seven to 10 years. She acts and thinks like a girl of 15 years, but her body shows she is elderly. She is currently hospitalized in the Clinic  Cuz Jiminián where she is receiving care and medical checkups, because, in addition to the above problems, the heart shows signs of tiring.

she stayed till fifth grade but, she left school because she lost her vision and she cant write. No treatments have been proven effective in the world. At least 90% of patients die from complications of atherosclerosis, such as heart attacks or strokes, and mental development is not affected. “ I have no idea what I am going to do when I grow up” she said in the interview.

Yuleydi Jimenez lives with her parentsat Dominican Republica. they run a small grocery store to survive. Her mom ,Ondina Jimenez , ensures , in despite being different, she has always been a happy girl, sings around the house, but sometimes when people make comments about her condition, she feels sad.

Yuleydi, her mom and sister

Yuleydi, her mom and sister

She was smiling when she was speaking with her mom, she said that she is happy after all and she wants show to everybody that it’s possible to be happy. Her strong faith in God made me think about myself. Sometimes I few weak in front of some problems , on the other hand, Yuleydi is getting strong , and stronger independent of her terminal situation. I learned my lesson today , I tought.

There are few ways you can help raise money for Progeria research this one takes virtually no effort on your part –  It sounds  good doesn’t it?

Progeria Research Foundation, is listed on, a search engine that donates half its revenue, about a penny per search, to the charities its users designate. Every time you use (instead of your current search engine, such as Google) money goes to PRF.

The site is powered by Yahoo!, so you’ll get the same quality search results that you’re used to.

Here is the link to add the GoodSearch toolbar to your browser, so it is there every time you need it: Be sure to type in PRF in the “my charity” box. It takes less than 20 seconds to set up!

Please also spread the word to your friends, family and co-workers – just 1,000 of us searching two times a day will raise over $7,000 in a year, doing searches we’d do anyway and without spending a dime!

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