Medical

How world's largest brain tumour was removed in India

How world's largest brain tumour was removed in India

Santlal Pal, a shopkeeper from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, had been living with the tumour for three years before his surgery was carried out.

It was so large that it appeared as if he had two heads mounted on top of each other.

Dr. Trimurti Nadkarni, the neurosurgeon who did the surgery along with a five-member team, said, " In fact, the tumor was much bigger than his own head".

The previous heaviest tumour to be successfully excised from a patient who survived the procedure was three pounds. "The weight of a similar case reported earlier was 1.4 kgs", he said.Along with the tumour, even the affected skull bone was also removed during the surgery and they are awaiting the final medical reports to ascertain if it was benign or cancerous, he added.

According to some doctors in Nair Hospital, the tumour could be the largest to be removed from a brain in medical literature globally. The patient has made good recovery and is now ambulatory and on full diet.

He had been to three hospitals in Uttar Pradesh before the procedure in Mumbai but the doctors in those places had termed the tumor untreatable.

Doctors said about 10 per cent of the tumour was growing within Pal's skull, putting pressure on his brain and causing him to lose his eyesight; if not treated successfully, it could have caused neurological damage or paralysis. But as these images show they can also reveal some of the most gruesome and freakish results.

The tumour was found to have invaded the brain on both sides of the midline through the skull bone of the patient, said Nadkarni. Doctors at at Nair Hospital said if allowed to grow, the tumour could have led to vascular steal, a condition when blood flow gets diverted from one region to another, in his case from the brain to the tumour. "Such large tumors are rare and a surgical challenge".

He said the operation took seven hours to complete and the patient required 11 units of blood. "We are praying that he regains his vision", Pal's wife told the Hindu. He feels relieved of "a large burden on his head"'.