An astonishing tumour the weight of a two-year-old child has been removed from the abdomen of a 54-year-old woman by surgeons in Russia.
The woman, who had not visited a doctor in 20 years, at first thought she was just putting on weight.
But when her stomach grew so big she could barely walk, stand or even sit comfortably she finally consulted medics.
Astonished surgeons at Regional Clinical Hospital No. 2 in Primorsky Krai found she had been living with a 35lb (16-kilogramme) ovarian cyst, reports local media.
Clinical photos of the three-hour operation show the massive tumour being manhandled out of the patient’s body after it had been successfully cut out.
Gynaecologist Oksana Gorbunova, who took part in the op, told local media that the patient was at risk of death as the tumour was crushing her vital organs.
Dr Gorbunova said: “The most complex multi-stage operation lasted 3 hours 10 minutes, the weight of the removed cyst capsule was 16 kilogrammes, the volume of the pumped-out liquid exceeded 35 litres.
“The entire hospital fought for the patient’s life. Everyone was sick at heart, including the chief physician and the administration.
“Of course, the coordinated work of professionals from various fields and the talents of resuscitators helped save the patient’s life.”
She added: ” Every minute counted.”
Dr Gorbunova said she had never known a case like it urged other patients to visit their doctors regularly.
She said: “In our practice, we have encountered such a case for the first time, and I have not found a description in the literature about the surgical treatment of tumours of this size.
“This situation could, of course, have been prevented. To do this, it is necessary to undergo an annual medical examination.
“Considering that this can be done in one day – go to specialists, including a gynaecologist, and take the necessary tests.”