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World's tallest woman dies in China

SHANGHAI, Dec. 5 (UPI) -- The tallest woman in the world, China's Yao Defen, has died at the age of 40, her family said.

The 7-foot-8-inch Yao passed away in the house she shared with her mother in a small village in central Anhui Province, Shanghaiist reported Wednesday.

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Yao's gigantism was caused by a tumor on her pituitary gland.

By the age of 15, she was already over 6 feet tall and her family hoped she would have a successful career as a basketball player but her massive frame made that impossible.

Instead, Yao found work in a circus freak show that toured the country.

There was no word on the exact cause of Yao's death. A neighbor said her mother found her lying in her bed not breathing..

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