Medics treating a teenage girl’s stomach pains were stunned to discover a giant 4kg hairball blocking her digestive system.
Ayperi Alekseeva, 18, was admitted to hospital after being unable to eat or drink, before doctors decided to operate.
When doctors realised there was a blockage they performed emergency surgery - and removed a hairball weighing almost 4kg (8.8lbs).
Doctors said the girl - who had a habit of chewing the tips of her hair, and eating hair she picked up from the carpet - would have died if she hadn’t had the operation.
[Cosmetic surgery addict has spent £100k on 20 procedures to look like 'human doll' - even though it nearly killed him]
[Inspirational doctor left paralysed from waist down returns to surgery thanks to 'stand-up wheelchair']
Ayperi received treatment at Bishkek Hospital in the capital of Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek.
The hospitals senior professor of surgery, Bahadir Bebezov and his colleague, associate professor Tilek Umetaliev, said they had never heard of such a large hairball despite searching through 50 years of medical records.
Professor Bebezov said: 'The parents brought her in after she started losing weight, and she couldn't eat anything. By the time we got her she could not even drink water. We realised we needed to operate immediately.
'It was actually the only alternative, nothing else would solve the problem. In fact her stomach was so badly swollen from hair and bits of wool from the carpet that it literally just oozed out soon as the wall of the stomach was cut.
'Psychologically apart from a habit of picking up hair from the carpet and eating it the young girl was perfectly normal and healthy. She also chewed the tips of her hair.'
He added that she had promised never to chew her hair in the future and was recovering from the operation with the parents happy to take her back home at the end of the week.