BAKERSFIELD, California (KGET) -- A Bakersfield man is recovering after undergoing what doctors say will be life-changing surgery. Larry West discovered an abdominal growth fourteen years ago. It's since grown to an estimated 200 pounds.
But Tuesday, doctors began removing the extra weight that's been holding him back.
"It just kept growing larger and larger all of the time," said West of the growth.
It begins at his belly button and hangs to his feet.
"I have a hanging 150 to 200 pound sack of potatoes hauling around on me all of the time," said West.
It started growing in 1999 and it rapidly enlarged, making it nearly impossible to walk and leading to painful infections.
"Two o'clock in the morning, he'll start getting the chills, teeth chattering chills, and high fever. And, what are you going to do at two o'clock in the morning?," said West's wife, Charlotte.
Despite the pain and problems, doctors refused surgery, nor would insurance cover the costs. Until this year, under a new plan, West went to Memorial Hospital and met Dr. Vip Dev.