Joy for boy with largest birthmark in Europe

PUBLISHED: 12:47 02 February 2006 | UPDATED: 09:32 06 May 2010

Owen Brown with mum Sally-Anne, sister Georgia-Louise and grandma Jill Connor

Owen Brown with mum Sally-Anne, sister Georgia-Louise and grandma Jill Connor

LIKE all children his age five-year-old Owen Brown loves playing outdoors. But for Owen, who has the largest birthmark in Europe, playing out in the sun is not possible. The birthmark is a very rare type called congenital giant melanocytic naevi and means

LIKE all children his age five-year-old Owen Brown loves playing outdoors.

But for Owen, who has the largest birthmark in Europe, playing out in the sun is not possible.

The birthmark is a very rare type called congenital giant melanocytic naevi and means he is at high risk of developing skin cancer.

Even on a cold winter's day he is still at risk from the sun. When he goes out he has to wear factor 60 sun protection and dark coloured clothes.

His birthmark starts at the top of his shoulders and runs right down his back but apart from this he is perfectly healthy.

Owen, who lives in Park Lane, Knebworth, has recently been given a donation from The Royal Masonic Trust for Girls and Boys which has enabled his family to purchase a special garden room, which doesn't allow sun rays through.

Mum Sally-Anne said: "It will make an enormous difference to Owen. It will mean he can play outside with his big sister rather than having to remain indoors. He has already asked me, 'Mum, why am I different?' and he is only five. But the children at school are very good with him and they know about his birthmark.

"We have to be very careful because any sun damage done as a child can affect him in later life."

Owen can only play outside with his friends at playtime for the last 10 minutes of break and his family cannot go to the beach in the summer.

Mrs Brown said Owen's big sister Georgia-Louise, nine, has always been very good about the situation.

She said: "She is very protective of Owen.

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