New record? 222 uterine fibroids removed from 34-year-old Bengaluru woman

Ritika Acharya, a journalist and former TV anchor, approached the hospital in September.
Dr Shanthala Thuppanna (left) with Ritika Acharya | Express
Dr Shanthala Thuppanna (left) with Ritika Acharya | Express

BENGALURU: Sakra World Hospital removed a staggering 222 uterine fibroids from a 34-year-old woman. The hospital may have broken a record in most fibroids removed, with Guinness World Records last recording a total of 186 removed from a woman in Egypt in 2016.

Ritika Acharya, a journalist and former TV anchor, approached the hospital in September. She was anaemic, and had been suffering from fatigue and breathing problems for close to two years.

In addition to a stomach the size of a seven or eight-month pregnant woman.

“There were people all around me asking if I was pregnant, and it really affected how I felt about myself,” Acharya said at a press conference on Tuesday.

The surgery, spanning almost five hours, was successful in removing the benign growths from Acharya’s uterus, weighing about 2.5kg.

The surgery was headed by Dr Shanthala Thuppanna, a senior consultant, and head of the obstetrics and gynaecology department at Sakra.

“It’s a very common problem affecting numerous women, and doesn’t require surgery but in her case, we found a cauliflower-like growth on the walls of her uterus and had to remove it,” she told the media.

Uterine fibroids are a common condition in women of reproductive age, explained Thuppanna. They’re usually non-cancerous growths on the walls of the uterus.

While there haven’t been any concrete causes for the condition, increased hormone levels, family history and race might affect its likelihood, she said.

Complications could result in anaemia, clotting, fatigue, pressure on the organs due to the size of the growths, and a bulging stomach. However, Thuppanna said that though the problem was common, it was unlikely to progress far in most afflicted women.

“I was hesitant to go to hospital because of the pandemic scare,” said Acharya, “I wasn’t able to do any bending exercises though I led a pretty active lifestyle. It took me two years to actually consult a doctor.”

Thuppanna mentioned that this was common with many women coming in only after the problem becomes severe.

“We’re now seeing a large influx of people as they feel safer, and were hesitant due to Covid-19,” she said.

Acharya spoke about her recovery.

“I’m still recovering from the mental stress of the fibroids in my body, but otherwise I feel great. I don’t know if I’ve broken a Guinness World Record, but it’s not for something I’m very proud of.”

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The New Indian Express