DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Neurofibromatosis. This rare inherited condition is also known as Recklinghausen's disease. It is characterised by these areas of pigmentation and by the formation of neurofibromas (tumours), sometimes accompanied by physical deformation and a predisposition to brain tumours and various forms of cancer. The tumours that appear on the skin are generally benign, but can turn malignant. They are soft and fibrous, and grow from the fibrous converings of nerves. People with this disorder should seek genetic counselling before planning a child.
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