Woman Sheds 20-Pound Tumor

Steve Miller
April 20, 2018 - 4:46 pm
Kim Turner Dr. Ajay Maker

Kim Turner and Dr. Ajay Maker talk with reporters Friday. (WBBM Newsradio/Steve Miller)


CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- A downstate Illinois woman is marking eight months since her life-changing surgery at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where surgeons removed a 20-pound tumor from her stomach.

The huge liposarcoma was removed by a team lead by Dr. Ajay Maker, director of surgical oncology.

"We knew exactly what we were up against when we started the surgery,” Maker explained at a news conference Friday.

20 Pound Tumor
The 20-pound tumor removed from Kim Turner (Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center)

“I think it was a surprise when we removed it,” he added, “when we didn't have a container large enough to transport it from the operating room down to pathology.

"So someone actually had to go and find a larger container -- I'm told, from the hardware store."

"And that was news to me," said the patient, 59-year-old Kim Turner of El Paso, a community near Bloomington-Normal.

Kim Turner After Before
Kim Turner: after surgery, left; before surgery removed a 20-pound tumor, right. (Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center)

After surgery, the doctor told her the tumor was the size of two basketballs.

Turner initially thought she was merely gaining weight. But she was losing appetite and getting constipation.

"If you have something that you don't know is going on, check it out," she said. "I should have probably, several years ago, made myself go do it, and I didn't."

Now, she's feeling fine and has a new wardrobe, given her slimmer appearance. Turner has regular doctor appointments in case the tumor comes back.