Hunter syndrome, also called mucopolysaccharidosis II or MPS II, is a rare disease that's passed on in families. It usually affects only boys. Their bodies can't break down a kind of sugar that builds bones, skin, tendons, and other tissue. Those sugars build up in their cells and damage many parts of the body, including the brain. Exactly what happens is different for every person.
When your son has Hunter syndrome, there are things you can do to help him play, have friends, and do some of the things that other kids do, even though he may look different from his pals.
Growing up in New York City, the actor and her three siblings, including twin brother Hunter, saw their parents struggle to put food on the table for their large family. "We were a single-income family with four kids living in New York City," she recalls. "My parents tried not to make a big deal of it, but I know it was a struggle for them."
At P.S. 41 in Greenwich Village, Scarlett and her sister and brothers were among the children receiving government-subsidized lunches every day. Even as she...