site.btaBulgaria Joins Shine a Light on Neurofibromatosis Global Initiative

Bulgaria Joins Shine a Light on Neurofibromatosis Global Initiative
Bulgaria Joins Shine a Light on Neurofibromatosis Global Initiative
The National Palace of Culture illuminated as part of the Shine a Light on NF initiative, Sofia, May 17, 2024 (BTA Photo)

Bulgaria joined the Shine a Light on NF initiative for the first time on Friday. Symbolic buildings, historical and cultural monuments in four municipalities were illuminated as part of the initiative dedicated to the fight against the genetic disease neurofibromatosis (NF), including the National Palace of Culture in Sofia, the Tsarevets Fortress in Veliko Tarnovo, the Pantheon of the Bulgarian National Revival in Ruse, and the Razgrad Clock Tower.

Let's Shine a Light on NF takes place annually on May 17, World NF Awareness Day. The initiative involves illuminating in blue and green - the official NF colours - symbolic buildings, monuments, and infrastructure sites in dozens of countries.

Neurofibromatosis refers to a group of genetic conditions that cause the development of tumors on nerves throughout the body, which can cause blindness, deafness, bone abnormalities, disfigurement, learning difficulties, debilitating pain, and cancer. Although classified as a rare disorder, NF affects one in about 3,000 children in Bulgaria, and more than 4 million people worldwide, Dr. Ivan Chakarov of the Queen Giovanna University Hospital has told BTA. There are no exact figures for Bulgaria, but the ratio is likely to be the same, he added. Chakarov said that NF can be diagnosed in infancy by the typical café-au-lait spots on the skin, adding that Bulgarian patients can receive free treatment. He identified the lack of a single treatment unit and timely diagnosis as the biggest problems facing children affected by neurofibromatosis.

"There is currently no cure for neurofibromatosis. Thanks to the hard work of scientists and researchers around the world - and the support of many physicians, including the Children's Tumor Foundation - very promising advances have been made in the fight against NF in recent years," BTA learned from Nikola Gazdov of the Children's Tumor Foundation Europe.

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By 20:14 on 19.06.2024 Today`s news

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