(CNN)The New Jersey man had just one option to get rid of the massive tumor that had been growing on his neck and was now threatening his life: Remove it.
Doctors removed a tumor the size of a soccer ball from a man's neck
But its placement made that a risky endeavor.
Milton Wingert, 81, had been to several physicians to see the tumor over the past six months, but most were concerned about what it would take to remove the growth.
Then Wingert turned to Dr. Nazir Khan, a head and neck surgeon at Mount Sinai Hospital, who convinced him it was doable.
The men had a very thorough conversation regarding what could happen during surgery -- including potential complications. "I want everybody to be prepared, before we step in the operating room, for any scenario," Khan told CNN of what was conveyed.
"When a case is more complicated, my thought process is always, what is the best-case scenario, what's the worst-case scenario. And I prepare for the worst-case scenario and hope for the best."
The surgery, which took seven hours, was a success. Khan said the malignant tumor he removed weighed between 5 and 7 pounds.
And his patient's recovery is only just beginning.