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Bengaluru hospital doctors remove 3.5 kg tumour from 15-year-old girl's neck

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Bengaluru, Feb 17: Doctors at a hospital here have successfully removed a 3.5 kg crippling tumour from a 15- year-old girl's neck. Extending from her neck onto her chest, the benign tumour which had affected Surbhi Ben's life for more than a decade is identified by the doctors as fibromatosis.


A team of 21 doctors at Aster CMI Hospital performed the surgery to remove the football-sized tumour stuck on her neck. She is now able to resume her life normally, according to hospital statement on Tuesday.

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Born in an underprivileged family of farm labourers in Amreli district of Gujarat, Surbhi Ben was still a toddler when her parents first noticed the lumps around her face that have since then engulfed her neck, making her social pariah of sorts.

Over the years, her family had approached several doctors in and around Amreli district where many of them had suggested that the tumour cannot be excised upon at local hospitals and recommended her to approach hospitals in metro cities.

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The treatment involved surgeries and injection sclerotherapy which were quite expensive, the hospital statement said. Due to the prevailing economic condition of the family, they were unable to bear the cost of the treatment and pinned all their hopes on a miracle that could gift their child a new life.

Explaining her plight, Surbhi said she was unable to go anywhere because of the tumour and had to drop out of school a year ago due to the immense pain in her neck while doing my homework or an assignment.

"Even while stepping out, I had to cover myself and unlike other girls, I could not wear normal clothes and dresses due to the ailment. I often used to ask my mother, why am I the only one who is suffering and there were several moments where I used to feel hopeless and frustrated", she said.

Despite her crippling ailment, Surbhi had an optimistic outlook and wanted to resume her schooling to fulfill her dream of becoming a teacher. Fortunately for her, hope soon arrived in the form of a few well-wishers -- the 'NewsLions' helped facilitate the treatment along with 'Milaap' and raised over Rs 70 lakh through a crowdfunding effort to provide her this life- changing surgery of multiple sittings over last one year.

Once the funds were arranged through Milaap, the family then reached out to Aster CMI Hospital, where the team of doctors and surgeons worked for several months to remove the growth from her neck. Speaking about the complications involved in Surbhis surgery, Consultant - Paediatrics & Paediatric Intensive Care, Aster CMI Hospital, Chetan Ginigeri said there were three tumours present in her throat and that was intertwined with the nerves of her neck, which made her surgery extremely complicated.

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Consultant - Surgical Oncology, Girish G said the case had extensive involvement of structures in the neck going to upper torso both within and out of the thoracic cavity.

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    "The case was also immensely critical as the tumour had grown in the neck region where all the essential structures of life are located and hence we had to take extra precautions during the surgery", Girish said.

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