The world’s heaviest woman, 36-year-old Iman Ahmad Abdulati, is to fly to India from her home in Alexandria, Egypt, after one of the world’s leading bariatric surgeons volunteered to treat her.
Iman who weighs nearly 80 stone is leaving her home for the first time in 25 years to have the life-saving weight reduction surgery.
Her operation was almost grounded before it began after Indian immigration officials at in Cairo refused to believe that Iman was too big to visit the embassy to make her visa application as Indian law requires visa applicants to allow immigration police take their fingerprints.
It was the Indian External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj, who came to her aid after the surgeon, Dr Muffazzal Lakdawala contacted her via Twitter to ask for help.
Now, however, the medic is struggling with the problem of getting Iman to Mumbai this week for a series of operations that could last a year. While speaking to local media, Dr Lakdawala said: ‘Due to her heavy weight, we can’t bring her in a normal plane, so we are trying to arrange a private chartered flight instead.’
According to her family, she was born weighing 5kg and was diagnosed with elephantiasis, a parasitic infection that causes extreme swelling in a sufferer’s limbs and arms. She suffered a cerebral stroke at age 11 which left her bedridden and unable to support her growing weight, causing her to become a prisoner in her own bed as her weight continued to increase.
Dr Lakdawala has stressed how dangerous the operations could be for her and how life threatening ‘doing nothing’ might be. “Her life is at risk. She is a living time bomb. We have to take special precautions in this case to ensure there are no problems in the lung or the risk of a blood clot.” He said.