Vietnamese man with 90kg tumour offered chance at normal life

A Vietnamese man with a tumour on his leg that measures 1.2 meters in diameter and weighs up 90kg will finally be rid of his burden in a few hours.

Da Lat native Nguyen Duy Hai will undergo surgery on the 90 kilo tumour on his right leg tomorrow.

The operation will be held at France-Vietnam Hospital (FV), with American doctor McKay McKinnon as the main surgeon, according to Tuoitrenews.

Dr McKinnon is internationally known for having successfully treated similar tumour cases.

He visited and examined Hai at the hospital situated on Nguyen Luong Bang Street in District 7, shortly after he and his wife landed at Ho Chi Minh City-based Tan Son Nhat Airport on Tuesday morning.

Upon arriving at Hai's sickroom, the American doctor said through an interpreter, who is a nurse at the hospital, that Hai is now in better health and no longer suffers lung problems

This means his condition satisfies all the requirements for the coming surgery.

According to Hai, Dr McKinnon said he will be sent to the operating room on the morning of January 5, and his surgery will last from 10 to 12 hours.

However, the doctor acknowledged that the success rate of this operation is about 50 per cent.

"It's common for people to fear death, and I'm no exception. But when I heard that Dr. Mc Kinnon had decided to come back to Vietnam one more time to give me a new life, I became more hopeful," Hai said.

Hai told Tuoi Tre on Monday afternoon that he was transferred to FV on December 27 from HCMC-based Tumor Hospital, which failed to meet the conditions for his surgery.

First surgery a no-go

First surgery a no-go

The surgery was originally planned for November 18. However, it was canceled due to Hai's worsening health condition, HCMC Tumour Hospital said.

Hai said he has had regular health checks and is now in very good health.

"After the operation, if you hear ringing from my phone, it means that I'm still alive," he joked.

For his part, the American surgeon said in an earlier interview with Tuoi Tre that Hai's operability is high but added that there is little time left for him as his condition will quickly worsen as the tumour keeps growing.

This will seriously damage his heart, blood circulation, and other body functions.

Having successfully treated many giant tumours in his 30-year career, particularly one of a similar size to Hai's on an American woman in Michigan in 1999, Dr McKinnon said he is positive about the chance of success for the surgery, although the success rate only stands at about 50 per cent.

"The patient was a little bit older and in worse shape than Mr. Hai. She had a massive operation done, even when we knew her heart was not functioning and her lungs were either compromised or failing."

"She survived that surgery after 50 units of blood transfusion. She was in the hospital for about 6 weeks, and required physical therapy for about a year.

"And the woman is now leading a normal life, I am happy to say."

This article was contributed by Tuoi Tre News. For more information, visit the website http://www.tuoitrenews.vn/.