An actress with size K breasts that weigh a whopping two stone is desperate to raise £7,500 for a boob reduction after being ‘repeatedly dismissed by doctors and ordered to lose weight’. Anji Chalk suffers with such agonising back pain that she’s forced to use a walking stick to get around and fears she’ll be ‘permanently disabled’ by the crushing weight of her chest.
The 22-year-old has permanent dents in her shoulders and shells out £80 every two months on sturdy ‘granny’ bras due to the underwires regularly snapping. Anji, who started wearing a bra aged seven due to precocious puberty, suffers with painful sweat rashes and is regularly covered in bruises caused by people bumping into her breasts in the street.
After allegedly being repeatedly turned away by doctors to even be considered for NHS surgery due to her weight, 20-stone Anji embarked on a healthy eating plan and dropped two stone. However 5ft 7in Anji said her weight soon plateaued and, as she was unable to work out due to severe back pain, her weightloss journey ground to a halt.
Anji says a hormonal contraception she started five years ago caused her to pile on weight that she’s been unable to shift. Now doctors have come to the conclusion that she’s suffering from gigantomastia – an exponential growth of excessive breast tissue.
At her wits’ end being stuck in a ‘perpetual cycle of going to the doctors and being dismissed’, Anji is hoping to be able to get the operation done privately in the UK. Anji, from Llandudno, North Wales, said: “The doctors have said they want me to lose half my body weight and be around 10 or 11 stone, which of course I’d love to be.
“The thing is my breasts weigh about a stone each at least. I wear a size 40K and have to change my bras every couple of months because the underwires break.
“I have to spend so much money on ‘granny’ bras that I get commissioned from Poland – they cost about £80 for the cheapest. I don’t leave the house unless I go shopping but whenever I do I bring my walking stick with me.
“I get sores and sweat rashes under my breasts, it’s just agony and sometimes they itch to the point there is bruising. The straps cut into my skin and I have bruises and scars on my shoulders and indents from my bras.
“One of the big issues with my current bra is that the underwire digs into the skin on my sides because the cup size is one size too small and I have bruising on the side of my breasts too. People bump into me all the time, a number of times I’ve come home with bruises on my breasts because someone has accidentally knocked into me because they protrude out so much.
“The person thinks they’re not going to hit me but they do because of my breasts. When I lie down I have to manually move them off my chest if I want to sleep on my back.
“I’m not able to wear a bra lying down as the whole weight of them concentrated on my chest means I can’t breathe. I’m very worried that I’m now getting to a point where I will be permanently disabled because of it.”
Anji approached doctors in Llandudno, North Wales, from the age of 13, and doctors in Preston, Lancashire in 2019 from 2022 while studying at university. But Anji has a long history of suffering with breast-related issues starting at the very young age of seven when she went through precocious puberty.
Anji said: “I was seven when I started growing breasts. My parents were starting to worry and that was the catalyst for realising I was going through precocious puberty.
“I was so young so I didn’t completely notice. My parents didn’t really explain to me why I was going to the hospital at the time. However as I started to get older my parents explained to me when I started noticing.
“I remember being in year six, about nine or ten, and I was already wearing a bra. They grew relatively quickly. I remember going through the alphabet all by the time I was about 13.
“At 14, that’s when I started to grow quite exponentially because that was when my puberty was in full stride. I went from an E to an H. I got used to the idea of hiding away because I didn’t want people to see.
“It was also a topic of discussion with the girls and boys in my school and people would leer and stare downwards. I remember when I told my ‘friends’ my cup size, then a double-G size, they said ‘you’re not called Anji anymore, you’re called An-GG’.”
After going back and forth to her doctors ‘weekly’ begging for a breast reduction, Anji says she was repeatedly told to simply lose weight, something she struggled with due to the size of her chest. Anji said: “If I lost weight it wouldn’t solve the issue. Doctors often seem to think that if I lost weight my breasts would go smaller.
“Most of the time people lose weight they lose breast size as well, but not when you have grade three breast ptosis – the most severe form of sagging you can have. I’d be calling my doctors in North Wales every week trying to get an appointment, I’d get one and I’d be dismissed.
“I’d go to the doctors again, I’d be told ‘I’m going to prescribe going to the gym for six weeks’ and dismiss me. I can’t go to the gym because my back is in agony every day .It’s this perpetual cycle of going to the doctors, being dismissed and being told ‘oh we can only help you if you lose weight’.
“When I got to Lancashire [while studying] I was referred to a diet clinic but then the pandemic happened and the referral stopped because of lockdown. Doctors have watched me for years trying to lose weight and I definitely think an element of why I can’t is because I can’t do the exercise.
“I’ve been able to lose some weight. Last year I went on a diet and I was able to lose 2st but I very quickly plateaued. I just could not lose anymore weight because I wasn’t able to do the exercise alongside it.”
After starting a contraception five years ago, Anji says it caused her to pile on the pounds, which exacerbated the size of her breasts. Anji said: “About five years ago I started a contraception that caused me to put on an extreme amount of weight that I’ve never actually been able to get off.
“I’ve done so many diets, I’ve gone to the doctors, they’ve had me go to dietitians but nothing’s working. A good reason for that is because now I’ve gotten to a point where my mobility is compromised.
“It’s definitely been difficult being a performer as we have to do a lot of dancing and physical movement. My back is at a point now where I cant even go to work [some days] as I can’t move out of my bed and I have two walking aids.
“The doctors have said this isn’t just a situation with my joints, it’s clearly a result of the breasts. I’ve gone to the doctors to see if there’s a hormonal reason why my breasts have grown so large.
“The main one they’ve come to the conclusion to is gigantomastia, which is exponential growth of excessive breast tissue and it’s usually caused by hormonal spikes. My back is at a point now where I can’t even go to work [some days] as I can’t move out of my bed and I have two walking aids.
“The doctors have said this isn’t just a situation with the joints, it’s clearly a result of the breasts.” After being ‘dismissed’ numerous times by GPs Anji, who is forced to squeeze into size 20-22 top, has decided to take matters into her own hands and is fundraising to get surgery done privately.
Anji said: “This year I’ve been at an all-time low with my back pain, I do fear that it’s just going to get worse and worse.
“Breast reductions are seen as cosmetic no matter how hard you try to tell doctors, they will always see them as a cosmetic procedure first before being a necessity. Friends said if I set up a GoFundMe page they’d donate and I’ve had so much support already, which is absolutely amazing.
“If I got the surgery it would be life-changing, I don’t know a life without having excessively large breasts. If I was going to get this surgery it would quite literally be a weight lifted off my shoulders.
“The idea of not having to use a walking stick, being able to exercise, not having to take painkillers everyday would be weird, but a wonderful weird.” Anji’s GP surgery were contacted for comment but failed to respond.
NHS Greater Preston CCG is unable to provide comment on individual patient cases. You can donate to Anji’s page here.