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Connecticut Woman Gets 132-Pound Ovarian Tumor Removed In 5-Hour Surgery

May 04, 2018 10:00 PM EDT
Surgeons successfully removed one of the biggest known tumors from a patient.
(Photo : Chandan Khanna | AFP/Getty Images)

A woman in Connecticut is now in recovery after doctors removed a 132-pound ovarian tumor from her at the Danbury Hospital in a single surgery.

The benign tumor is one of the largest known tumors to be removed in a surgery. The patient, who chose to remain anonymous, is expected to make a full recovery.

According to a release from Danbury Hospital, which is part of the Western Connecticut Health Network, the procedure took two weeks of extensive planning, a team of nearly 25 specialists, and five hours to complete.

The Tumor

The patient, 38, approached a gynecologist when she started gaining a massive amount of weight, around 10 pounds a week in a period of two months.

When a CT scan revealed a large ovarian mass, she was referred to Vaagn Andikyan, MD from the Western Connecticut Medical Group. At this point, the patient was extremely malnourished and had to use a wheelchair due to the tumor's weight, the doctor recalls.

A 25-pound tumor can be expected, Andikyan says, but a 132-pound one is rare and a surprise even to the doctors.

While the abnormally large tumor was noncancerous, it was dangerous due to its size and position, compressing nearby blood vessels, gynecologic oncologist Linus T. Chuang, MD, explains in a report from CNN.

"She can't eat, she can't walk, and there are problems related to potential complications with this large mass compressing the venous system," Chuang adds. "She was at very high risk of developing blood clots because of compression of the blood flow."

The Surgery

It took two weeks of planning to get the surgery underway due to the numerous challenges, including the position of the tumor atop a major blood vessel.

Andikyan, Chuang, plastic surgeon David Goldenberg, MD, and the rest of the medical team were able to successfully perform the tumor resection and abdominal reconstruction in a five-hour surgery, also removing the patient's left ovary.

"During the surgery, we removed this gigantic tumor that originated from her left ovary," Andikyan tells CNN. "We removed her left ovary, her left (fallopian) tube, and we removed the affected peritoneal tissue that was adhering to the ovary."

The patient's uterus and right ovary remains intact, so she will be able to reproduce should she want to.

"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," Andikyan continues.

Now, three months post-operation, the patient is well on her way to a full recovery.

Pathologists are currently conducting genetic tests on the tumor in an attempt to understand its rapid growth.

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