A terrifying four-inch ‘devil horn’ which grew from the top of man’s head has finally been removed by doctors.
Shyam Lal Yadav, 74, said the unicorn-like horn started growing around five years ago after he bumped his head, but has been “kept under control” by his barber.
But the elderly farmer said it soon became hard and grew so long he had to seek help from surgeons.
The growth, called a sebaceous horn, is a tumour – often benign – that forms from the keratin in the skin and nails.
They typically grow on the face, hands, ears and nails – and in rarer cases they have been found to grow on a man’s penis.
Neurosurgeons at Bhagyoday Tirth Hospital in Sagar city, India, removed the ‘devil horn’ lump and he is now recovering.
Surgeon Dr Vishal Gajbhiye said: “Around five years ago the patient had hurt his head after which a lump started growing.
“Initially, he ignored it as it did not cause any discomfort. Also, he got the growth cut by the local barber.
“But, when the lump hardened and started growing further, he approached the hospital at Sagar.
“In medical term, this type of rare growth is called sebaceous horn (devil’s horn).
“As the horn is composed of keratin, the same material found in fingernails, the horn can usually be removed with a sterile razor.
“However, the underlying condition will still need to be treated.
“The sebaceous horns are predominantly benign lesions however the possibility of malignant potential should always be kept in mind.
“Treatments vary, but they can include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.
“Immediately after its removal, skin was grafted on the wound which has now healed completely.”
Shyam, from Rahli village in Madhya Pradesh, India, said the lump had been growing in size since 2014.
The cause of the horns is unknown, but it is believed that exposure to radiation or sunlight can trigger the condition.
Photos taken before the operation showed the horn towering out the top of his head.
Doctors initially performed a CT to determine what treatment would be necessary.
Surgeons then used a razor to remove the horn but will need to treat the root cause of the growth to prevent it from returning in the future.
Shyam spent ten days in hospital recovering from the surgery and a biopsy of the growth confirmed it was harmless.
Details of the case have been sent to the International Journal of Surgery because of how rare this type of growth is, doctors said.
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