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World Brain Tumour Day: How Poonam beat brain tumour and won National Basketball Championship for Chattisgarh

Standing at 6'11", Poonam Chaturvedi was first diagnosed with a brain tumour in the year 2014.

Poonam Chaturvedi (Source: Sportsbeats India)

Poonam Chaturvedi (Source: Sportsbeats India)


Abhijit Nair

Updated: 7 Jun 2021 1:20 PM GMT

World Brain Tumor Day is celebrated on 8th June every year to spread awareness and educate people on Brain Tumor, their types, causes, symptoms and treatment. It was started in the year 2000 as a way to pay tribute to the people diagnosed with it and their families who go through the same turmoil as their beloved.

While the causes of brain tumours are fewer in India overall, the fatality continues to be high. In 2018, IARC reported that around 28,000 Brain Tumor cases occur in India every year, among which more than 24,000 lose their lives annually.

It is not easy to fight such a chronic illness. Yet, we have a great example from the Indian sporting fraternity who has not only faced severe health conditions while playing her game but still continued to play the sport she adores with the necessary treatment and precautions. The sportsperson in question here is Poonam Chaturvedi – the tallest basketball player of India.

Hailing from the state of Uttar Pradesh, Poonam Chaturvedi took up basketball on the insistence of her father, purely because of her height. She then soon shifted her base to Chattisgarh due to the lack of opportunities in her home state.

Standing at 6'11", Chaturvedi was first diagnosed with a brain tumour in the year 2014. Even though she was diagnosed with a tumour, Chaturvedi continued to play. In fact, she was one of the main reasons behind Chattisgarh winning the National Championships in the year 2014 when she played through a headache in the final against Railways.

To start off the tumour was 3.6mm in size, which then reduced during treatment, which spanned over five years. She was completely cured of the tumour in 2019.

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