Surgeons have removed an astonishing 46-kilogramme tumour from a woman who thought she’d just been putting on weight.
The tumour – about the same weight as a small person – was cut out during an emergency op on the 45-year-old patient, who is just 1.45 metres (4’9″) tall.
Before the operation, she had tipped the scales at 150 kilogrammes (24 stone), with the tumour accounting for about a third of her body weight.
A team of 12 led by surgeon Glaucio Boechat at Sao Jose do Avai Hospital in Itaperuna, Rio de Janeiro state, south-eastern Brazil, performed the op on 31st August.
The patient had arrived at the hospital in a serious condition with reports of extreme shortness of breath, according to Dr Boechat.
This was after she had sought out one of the city’s Emergency Care Units (UPA) and was transferred to the hospital.
Dr Boechat added: “It was the biggest tumour that I have operated on and certainly one of the biggest that anyone has operated on.
“It’s not every day that you perform surgery on a tumour of that size.”
At the time of reporting, the patient was in a “lucid and stable” condition at the hospital’s ICU and was breathing without the aid of external devices.
The patient had been living with the tumour for over five years and thought she had been putting on weight, according to local media reports.
As tumours are characterised by independent growth and diagnoses tend to happen at a late stage, the mass of abnormal tissue grew over time until it weighed a shocking 46 kilogrammes (7 stone).
The patient could hardly lie down and had problems speaking before the operation, according to Dr Boechat, who has worked as a general surgeon for 23 years.
A biopsy was performed to determine the nature of the tumour, the results of which will be available after a fortnight.