May 31, 2016 - 7:32pm
A woman has warned others of the importance of acting on gynaecological symptoms after she was diagnosed as having a huge teratoma or ‘evil twin’ tumour in her body. The tumours are rare growths which can feature bone, hair and teeth; resembling a small, deformed human inside a person’s body.
The tumours take the name ‘teratoma’ from the Greek for ‘monstrous tumour’ and can cause considerable pain and distress. They begin in embryos when tissue of the developing body breaks away in error and folds up. They can lie undetected for years after birth and into adulthood.
The 24-year-old woman, who has not been named, has taken to online forum Reddit to share her experience and warn other women of the importance of getting medical help when experiencing abdominal pain. She explained: “Last weekend I was experiencing very severe abdominal pain (which I had blamed on menstrual cramps for several months) that drove me to Emergency Room. My doctors guessed it was my appendix, kidney stones, or possibly further digestive problems but one look at a CT scan showed a “9-10cm mass” in the middle of my abdomen, immediately behind my uterus.
“After taking in a heroic amount of dilaudid intravenously over three hours, I went into surgery and my teratoma, right ovary, and right fallopian tube were diced up and able to be extracted (very luckily)laparoscopically. Only one of my laparoscopy incisions had to be extended 3-4 “in order to remove all of the offending contents.”
She added that: “Recovery was very easy, and pain and discomfort remains minimal. I feel a [lot] lighter.”