23-Year-Old Woman With 'Rapunzel Syndrome' Has 14 Pound Hairball Removed From Stomach

23-year-old Sophie Cox suffers from a condition known as trichotillomania, an anxiety-related condition that involves patients pulling out their own hair compulsively. She also has trichophagia, a condition where patients actually eat the hair that they have pulled out. Otherwise known as "Rapunzel Syndrome," this condition can lead to a heavy build up of hair in the patient's digestive tract, ultimately leading to hairballs. This act comforted Sophie, who thought it was totally harmless. Little did she know a giant hairball was growing inside of her and it was time for it to come out...
WARNING: Some images in this article may be disturbing to some readers. 

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Meet Sophie Cox. For a while, Sophie found comfort picking out and then eating her hair. Things changed when she was pregnant with her daughter.

Sophie began to feel stomach pains while carrying her daughter. 

She also started to lose weight, a concerning symptom while pregnant. After giving birth to her daughter, the pain became too excruciating to bear any longer. “By October 2015, I couldn’t eat without vomiting and my stomach would swell up,” Sophie said in an interview. She added that “I’d lost [84 pounds] in two years and dropped six dress sizes, taking me to a size 12.” She went to get a medical opinion. 

At first, doctors were puzzled.

Only after an endoscopy (scope) was performed did doctors make the startling discovery. All of her symptoms were being caused by a giant hairball. “The specialist hadn’t seen anything like it in 30 years. It was too big to break down in my stomach, leaving me malnourished and dehydrated," Sophie described

Doctors scheduled to have the mass removed from her stomach, but unfortunately, Sophie would have to wait five full months with it still inside of her...

The surgery finally approached and doctors spent six hours in surgery carefully removing the hairball. 

Here is Sophie's scar after the surgery. 

"I felt instantly better when I woke up, even though I was sore and groggy," she said

These images may be disturbing to some readers...

This is the hairball removed from Sophie's stomach. 

It's hard to believe, but the mass of tangled hair weighed 14 pounds.

This wasn't the only amazing thing about this hairball...

It was about a foot long!

Here is a photo of the hairball while it was being removed in surgery. 

From this point on, Sophie is being closely monitored and doctors are trying to understand exactly how something this large grows inside of a stomach for so long. 

This case of "Rapunzel Syndrome" isn't entirely uncommon. 

This two pound hairball was recently removed from the stomach of a 15-year-old girl in India. 

Here is a big kudos to the team of doctors and nurses that were able to relieve Sophie of such a bizarre and harrowing condition!

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Main Image via Anpei

Source: diply.net