Dalip Singh, who wrestles for World Wrestling Entertainment, or WWE, under the name The Great Khali, had brain surgery at a UPMC Presbyterian hospital in Pittsburg on Wednesday. TribLive reports that Singh successfully had a tumor removed from his pituitary gland, located at the base of the brain.
The professional wrestler was in surgery for four hours as doctors removed the tumor that caused his large stature. It was the tumor's effect on his pituitary gland that made Singh's body grow to seven-feet-one-inch tall and weigh 347 pounds. according to UPMC neurosurgeon and WWE medical director Dr. Joseph Maroon.
TribLive claims that Maroon said Singh's condition is called acromegaly, in an interview on Thursday. The hormonal condition can be fatal or cause high blood pressure, diabetes and cardiovascular disease increases over time and has no preventative measures, according to PubMed Health.
"As part of our ongoing wellness evaluation, we are happy that the Great Khali had successful pituitary surgery," said WWE spokesperson Adam Hopkins, as reported by TribLive. "We look forward to him returning to the ring in the near future."
The WWE medical director thinks Singh's recovery should only take three months. Hospital spokesperson Susan Manko reportedly said that the wrestler should be released from the hospital over the weekend following his surgery.
Despite his massive size, the Great Khali is not the tallest athlete that the WWE has ever had on their roster. Andre the Giant stood three inches taller at seven-foot-four-inches tall and weighed close to 500 pounds.
Andre Roussimoff, who performed as Andre the Giant, died of congestive heart failure in January 1993 at the age of 46. Roussimoff was afflicted with the same condition as Singh.
There have been no reports of when the Great Khali will be returning to action in the WWE. The former World Heavyweight Champion will need to be cleared by WWE medical official before he is allowed to wrestle at any WWE events.
Singh owes much of his success to his rare and dangerous disorder, being that his height played a role in him becoming a WWE superstar. Even being considered a "giant," the Punjabi Nightmare is often criticized by WWE fans for his wrestling abilities.
The Great Khali was listed as number one on Bleach Report's list: "WWE's 10 Worst In-Ring Wrestlers in the Company Right Now." [Khali] has a place on the roster because of his international appeal and his almost superhuman size," writes Bleach Report columnist Drake Oz. "But given his lack of athleticism and his broken down body, he should be used the right way. ...And that's not as a wrestler. "
Bleach Report's list was published on Friday, after Khali underwent surgery. At the end of the article, Oz adds, "That being said, we still wish the big guy well as he recovers from surgery."