A 38-year-old woman was desperate for help. She suffered from a tumor that grew bigger and bigger each day at an alarming rate. She was becoming hopeless as doctors kept turning her away, unable or unwilling to help. But finally, God led her to the right place, and a medical team removed her 132-pound tumor before it was too late.
Tumors carry with them the terrifying threat of cancer. But that’s not what made this 38-year-old Connecticut woman’s ovarian tumor so scary. In fact, doctors found the mass to be benign. But that didn’t stop the 132-pound tumor from nearly taking her life!
***Warning: Some images may be considered disturbing***
Cancer-Free But Still In Danger
A 38-year-old teacher, who wishes to keep her identity private, is recovering from a harrowing ordeal. When her doctor found a tumor on her left ovary, it must have been a relief to hear it wasn’t cancerous.
The tumor was, however, “mucinous.” This means a gelatin-like substance produced by the tumor cells poured into the mass. So, as it filled, the tumor got bigger and bigger and spread outside of the ovary.
Soon, it was growing at the alarming rate of about 10 pounds per week, to the point it started threatening the woman’s life!
The mass started creating all kinds of problems like malnourishment, severe swelling in her legs, and pressure on her blood vessels.
“There were a lot of issues related to this very large tumor in the abdomen. She can’t eat, she can’t walk, and there are problems related to potential complications with this large mass compressing the venous system,” Dr. Linus Chuang, chairman of obstetrics and gynecology for Western Connecticut Health Network, said. “She was at very high risk of developing blood clots because of compression of the blood flow.”
Yet, as the woman sought medical help, doctors kept turning her away.
Woman Desperate To Be Rid Of 132-Pound Tumor
The working mom couldn’t go to work. She couldn’t even walk, as the tumor left her wheelchair-bound. And all the while, the mass just kept getting bigger as she tried to find a doctor who could, and would, do something.
Finally, God sent the desperate woman the help she needed just in time. In fact, doctors aren’t sure she’d have made it after a few more weeks of growth.
“When I first walked into the examination room, I found this 38-year-old malnourished patient with a weight of 350 pounds and extensive tumor that was about 100 centimeters [39 inches] large,” recalled Dr. Vaagn Andikyan, a gynecologic oncologist for Western Connecticut Health Network and lead surgeon on the case. “I saw fear in the patient’s eyes. She was so hopeless, because she had seen several other doctors, and they were unable to help her.”
Doctors at Danbury Hospital in Connecticut agreed to help the poor woman and assembled a team to remove the now 132-pound tumor. It was truly a blessing, as the woman’s condition had become unbearable.
“Her legs were so swollen that she was unable to walk. I’ve seen leg swelling, but I’ve never seen leg swelling of this magnitude,” Dr. Andikyan said.
Woman Finally Relieved Of 132-Pound Tumor
A large team of medical professionals performed a five-hour surgery, removing the 132-pound tumor, along with 6 pounds of abdominal wall tissue and excess skin that had been stretched by the tumor.
It was a tense operation, as the woman’s blood pressure started plummeting.
“As soon as we starting removing the tumor, the blood pressure of the patient started dropping,” Dr. Andikyan said.
But God was definitely at work through these doctors during the risky procedure.
“So cardiology and the anesthesia team was able to adjust intraoperative management to support her heart and lungs to be able to continue with surgery,” Dr. Andikyan explained.
After removing the enormous mass, doctors reconstructed the woman’s abdomen to repair the damage and disfigurement from the huge tumor. And miraculously, the team was able to protect the woman’s ability to bear children in the future.
“The good part about this story is, we were able to save her reproductive organs,” Dr. Andikyan said. “As of right now, she’s not interested in having more children, but she wanted to have the opportunity, and we were very careful to avoid damage to underlying reproductive organs.”
Harrowing Ordeal Has A Happy Ending
Several months after the surgery, the Connecticut woman is doing much better. Life is finally getting back to normal for her after living through such a nightmare.
“She’s back to a normal life, she’s back to work, and when I saw her in my office, I saw smiles, I saw hope, and I saw a happy woman who is back to her normal life and her family,” Dr. Andikyan happily reported.
The type of tumor she had are notoriously large and make up about 15% of all ovarian tumors.
“Ovarian mucinous tumors tend to be big,” Dr. Andikyan said. “But tumors this big are exceedingly rare in the literature. It may be in the top 10 or 20 tumors of this size removed worldwide.”
According to a 1994 report, one of the largest tumors ever removed from a human was a 303-pound ovarian tumor.
So, doctors are hoping this woman’s real-life bizarre medical story will encourage women to see their physicians if they have any symptoms of an ovarian mass. Symptoms may include abdominal or pelvic pain, bloating, feeling the need to urinate often, and menstrual changes not related to menopause.
The good news is that ovarian tumors aren’t the most common cancer in women. But it’s still crucial to monitor for them.
“It is a very deadly cancer if it’s not diagnosed in the early stage,” Dr. Chuang warned.
WATCH: Doctors Remove 132-Pound Tumor Just In Time
Be sure to listen to your body and keep up-to-date on checkups!
“The soul of a lazy man desires, and has nothing; But the soul of the diligent shall be made rich.” Proverbs 13:4