‘World’s heaviest woman’ loses 250kg after surgery in India

The Egyptian weighed 500 kilograms when she arrived in Mumbai in February 2017 on a modified plane to undergo emergency weight-loss surgery.

Egyptian patient Eman Ahmed Abd El Aty recuperates at the Saifee Hospital in Mumbai, India, on March 8, 2017, after undergoing bariatric surgery.  Saifee Hospital / Agence France-Presse
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MUMBAI // The “world’s heaviest woman” has shed half her weight — about a quarter of a tonne — in the two months she has been in India for treatment, doctors said.

Egyptian Eman Ahmed Abd El Aty weighed 500 kilograms when she arrived in Mumbai in February on a modified plane to undergo emergency weight-loss surgery.

In videos provided this week by the Saifee Hospital, where the 37-year-old had bariatric surgery last month, Ms Abd El Aty can be seen sitting up and smiling while listening to music.

“She looks a happier and slimmer version of her past self. She can finally fit into a wheelchair and sit for a longer period of time, something we never dreamt of three months back,” said doctors, announcing that she had lost 250kg.

Ms Abd El Aty had not left her home in Egypt’s Mediterranean port city of Alexandria for two decades until she arrived in India’s commercial capital on February 11.

She was put on a liquid diet to get her weight down to a low enough level for doctors to perform bariatric surgery, essentially a stomach-shrinking bypass procedure carried out on those wanting to lose excessive weight.

The diet helped Ms Abd El Aty lose around 100kg in a month, allowing doctors to operate on her in early March.

Ms Abd El Aty’s family said that as a child she was diagnosed with elephantiasis, a condition that causes the limbs and other body parts to swell, leaving her almost immobile.

The Egyptian has suffered several strokes and faced a series of other serious ailments owing to her weight including diabetes, high blood pressure, hypertension and sleep deprivation. She is unable to speak properly and is partially paralysed.

“She continues to lose weight rapidly and is awaiting the moment she can fit into a CAT scan machine to know the cause of her right-sided paralysis and convulsions,” doctors said in a statement published on the Save Eman Cause website on Wednesday.

Muffazal Lakdawala, the doctor leading Ms Abd El Aty’s treatment, added in a separate post that they hoped to put her on a trial obesity drug in six months. Doctors are trying to procure it from the United States, he said.

In July last year, the Guinness Book of World Records recorded American Pauline Potter as the world's heaviest woman at 293 kilos, well above Ms Abd El Aty's current weight.

* Agence France-Presse