A Man’s Friends Teased His Massive Beer Belly. When They Found Out What It Was, The Jokes Stopped

Gavin Hanson | Contributor

A California man was told by doctors that his often-mocked “beer gut” was actually a 77-pound tumor growing in his stomach, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.

Hernandez was 300 pounds when he noticed that while he was losing weight on his arms and legs, his “beer belly” kept growing. He had some typical symptoms of being overweight, like heartburn, constipation and trouble breathing to his doctor, but he also said his belly felt “hard” and “heavy,” according to WaPo.

After one doctor told him that he merely carried his weight in the front, a second opinion diagnosed him with retroperitoneal liposarcoma, a rare cancer of the fat cells, according to Mayo Clinic’s overview.

Hernandez’s friends used to joke about his gut. He told WaPo he rarely drinks beer but that he had always been “a big guy” so he didn’t notice when he started putting on the weight. (RELATED: Turn Any Can Of Beer Into A Luxurious Drinking Experience)

Doctors don’t know when the 77-pound tumor formed, but the surgeon who removed the mass, William Tseng, told local Los Angels CBS News that liposarcomas are extremely rare, can weigh many pounds and typically do not cause further problems throughout the body.

“This is probably the largest one I’ve removed,” Tseng reportedly told CBS, noting that he typically operates on 20 to 30-pound tumors of this kind.

Tseng and his team had to remove one of Hernandez’s kidneys due to damage from the tumor. The surgical team reported no other complications, noting that the tumor had not affected any major blood vessels or other organs. Hernandez will not need chemo or radiation therapy after the successful surgery, according to his doctors, WaPo reports.

“I was really lucky,” Hernandez said after the operation.

After instantaneously losing almost 100 pounds, Hernandez said he still doesn’t feel “100 percent” but that he does feel “totally different,” according to WaPo.

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