By Bilal Kuchay
A 16-year-old boy from India, who once weighed a staggering 330lbs, has lost 160lbs in a span of just 14 months.
Mahesh Bhubathi from Anantapur in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh was such a massive boy that children in the neighbourhood used to call him “Chota Bheem”, a cartoon character famous for his obese structure.
But last year, the teenager underwent a bariatric surgery to lose the extra fat.
Since then he has gone on a strict diet and exercise regime, losing almost half of his weight. He weighs only 170lbs now.
Born to Late Sathani Sreeramulu and Sathala Sulochana, 36, Bhubathi was an underweight boy at the time of his birth.
His mother, Sathala Sulochana who works in a hospital on a monthly salary of £50, said: “He was underweight not an obese baby at the time of his birth but started gaining weight after some illness.
“He would always feel hungry and eat whatever was available in the house. In his single meal, he would eat food which would have been enough for 10 people otherwise.”
She said her younger son is quite normal and goes to school unlike Bhubathi.
Sathani said: “Children used to make fun of him as he was not able to walk or play due to his massive size. He had to even quit his studies after class 4th.”
The poor mother said that without her or his younger brother’s support, Bhubathi was not able to even change his clothes or take shower.
“From changing clothes to taking a bath, we had to help him in everything. It was very painful to see him in such a condition. I was worried about him and wanted to take him to any good doctor but lacked financial resources,” she said
However, Bhubathi’s life changed in last year when a Laparoscopic and Bariatric surgeon at Endocare Hospital in Vijayawada, Dr. Ravikanth Kongara offered him a free treatment.
In January 2017, Bhubathi was admitted in the Endocare Hospital for a weight loss surgery.
Dr. Kongara had said: “He was suffering from Pader Willie Syndrome, a genetic disorder which often leads to obesity in children as they constantly hungry.
“When we admitted him in the hospital, he weighed 330lbs. Within three months after his surgery, he lost almost around 100lbs of weight.
“14 months after the surgery he has lost almost half of his weight.
“He is expected to lose another 30lbs to 40lbs in the next surgery in April.”
Bhubathi was not able to speak properly but he had learnt to speak well post surgery.
“I’m so happy that my son can walk, can speak like normal children. In just one year, his life has changed a lot.
“Today, he doesn’t need my help and does most of the things himself.
“I’m now thinking to send him to school again,” Sathala added.