Hard to stomach: Doctors remove hairball weighing FOUR POUNDS from intestines of student, 19, who ate her locks and chalk during lessons

Hard to stomach: Doctors remove hairball weighing FOUR POUNDS from intestines of student, 19, who ate her locks and chalk during lessons

When a teenager complained that she hadn’t been able to eat or drink for days, doctors decided they should look into the problem.

And what they found would put anyone off their dinner – a ball of hair weighing almost four pounds stuck between her stomach and small intestine.

Medics in India discovered that the 19-year-old student had a habit of eating her hair and chalk while in class, and the combination had built up inside her body.

A team of gastro-surgeons was alerted to the problem after the woman, from Rajgarh in Madhya Pradesh, attended the Maharaja Yeshwantrao Hospital in Indore last month. Led by Dr Parvinder Singh Lubana, the surgeons were able to remove the giant hairball in a successful operation. The hairball was wrapped around a mass of chalk.

Dr Amit Agarwal, one of the surgeons in the team, told NDTV.com that the woman had developed an intestinal obstruction leading to no intake of food and water for a couple of days.

Incredibly, the hairball is not the largest to be removed from a patient in recent years. In November 2007, doctors in the US reported having found a 10-pound hairball inside a woman’s stomach.

The woman, who was 18 at the time, sought help after suffering pain and swelling in her abdomen for five months, according to the New England Journal of Medicine. A scan showed that there was a large mass in her abdomen and further tests showed it to be a ball of black, curly hair.

Ronald Levy and Srinadh Komanduri, gastroenterologists at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois, wrote: ‘On questioning, the patient stated that she had had a habit of eating her hair for many years – a condition called trichophagia.’

The ball weighed 10 pounds and measured 15 inches by 7 inches by 7 inches, the doctors said. The medics added that, within five days of surgeons removing the hairball, the woman was eating normally and was sent home.

source: dailymail.co.uk

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