"Without appropriate treatment, I don't think this woman would have made another couple of weeks", Andikyan, a doctor at the Western Connecticut Health Network, told The Washington Post.
Complicating things for the woman: The tumor was growing. Her doctor did a CT scan and discovered that the patient, who has chosen to remain anonymous, had an enormous mass on her left ovary. And by February, it was adding about 10 pounds of mass a week.
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.
The doctors successfully removed the 132-pound tumor, and six pounds of abdominal wall tissue and excess skin stretched by the tumor.
Overseeing it all, Andikyan anxious about the patient's blood circulation. The hospital placed a cardiothoracic surgeon on standby in case things soured. "But tumors this big are exceedingly rare in the literature".More news: Diageo (DGE) Given "Outperform" Rating at Credit Suisse Group
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"As soon as we starting removing the tumor, the blood pressure of the patient started dropping". Andikyan described it as "mucinous", meaning it was filled with a substance similar to gelatin. There are many different forms of ovarian tumors, with some being cancerous. Most mucinous tumors (about 80 percent) are benign, and about 83 percent of mucinous tumors that are cancerous are diagnosed while they are stage I. These tumors tend to be larger than other tumors, but this tumor was one of the largest ever removed.
"During the surgery, we removed this huge 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", said Dr. Vaagn Andikyan, a gynecologic oncologist at Danbury Hospital in CT.
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 almost 25 specialists, and five hours to complete. And he could see the once-fearful woman who was wheeled into an examination room getting stronger every day.
"Her legs were so swollen that she was unable to walk". "We needed to involve physical therapists, but a few days after the surgery, she took her first steps".