A seven-year-old boy forced to wear a surgical mask after he was horrifically burned in a wood fire has returned to school after more than 18 months of intensive treatment.
Xiang Xiang, dubbed “the Chinese Mask Baby”, lost four fingers and was blinded in his right eye after the devastating October 2010 blaze.
Suffering severe burns to his face, he remained incredibly sensitive to the sun and was shunned by friends and family who considered him to be a “freak”.
Back to school: Xiang Xiang has returned to his studies after more than two years of treatment
Horrific: Xiang Xiang, dubbed “the Chinese Mask Baby”, lost four fingers and was blinded in his right eye after the devastating October 2010 blaze
But, as these heartbreaking pictures show, the Fenyang resident is now fully integrating back into some kind of normal life.
Xiang Xiang”s plight comes a month after another boy suffered a similar fate after a fire burned his face and hands off.
Wang Xiaopeng, who has an almost featureless face after the horrific accident two years ago, is soon to get the first of a dozen operations to try and restore some of his features.
His parents spent all their savings and took out loans to pay for three months of treatment and cannot afford to pay for any further surgery.
Back to school: Xiang Xiang is seen playing with friends, despite fears he was going to be bullied for his mask
Getting ready: Xiang Xiang seen having his surgical mask placed on his face
It led to Mail Online readers around the world calling for a fund to be set up to help him.
In response a special appeal was created by the British charity Journalism Without Borders, who will make sure donations will go towards the youngster”s medical bills.
The five-year-old has been without hair, lips, eyelids, and toes since an accident in November 2010.
He went up in flames after he accidentally set light to some corn stalks near his home in Yinchuan in China”s Ningxia Province.
Fears: Suffering severe burns to his face, he remained incredibly sensitive to the sun and was shunned by friends and family who considered him to be a “freak”
Staggering: Xiang Xiang almost died in the horrendous blaze in October 2010
Enjoying life: It is a massive change for Xiang Xiang, who has undergone months of treatment
His parents rushed him to Ningxia Medical University General Hospital where he managed to pull through.
However, he was left severely disfigured and the couple could only afford to pay for three months of treatment for their beloved son.
Similar: Wang Xiaopeng (right) also had to wear a surgical mask after a blaze melted his skin