A life-threatening brain tumor has miraculously turned a New Jersey painter from an ordinary artist into a promising Picasso — who now sells her masterpieces for as much as $7,500 apiece.
Doctors at New York-Presbyterian Hospital say Alison Silva is a medical marvel whose tumor left her with blinding visions — and breathtaking ability.
Faced with a choice between her artistic passion and surgery that could help her live a normal life, Silva, of North Bergen, N.J., opted against the operation because it might compromise her work.
"I had to do a lot of thinking when I was diagnosed," said Silva, 33. "The tumor is right by my memory, so I was scared with the thought of having to start over."
Silva, an artist since childhood, was likely born with the mass of tangled blood vessels, which press against the left side of her brain. It was only two years ago that her chronic headaches became unbearable. Something else happened, too — her inner vision became more intense.
When she sought treatment, doctors discovered the malformation in her head, which could lead to seizures or death.