Anne: Cervical cancer survivor
Westmeath woman Anne was 29-years-old and 29 weeks pregnant when she was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2012.
She had been suffering severe haemorrhaging for some time and knew that something was wrong. Scans showed a 7-centimetre tumour that was growing aggressively which could not be operated on directly, and after a c-section to deliver her son Colin and a brief rest period she attended hospital in Dublin over a number of months for a suite of treatments including chemotherapy, radiotherapy and brachytherapy, involving the targeted use of internal radiation.
Although the treatment was successful, the after-effects of Anne’s diagnosis are far from over. The intensity of her treatment meant she has had to undergo over a dozen operations to correct the impact of the therapy on her internal organs, and she will require further surgery along with the necessary clinical supports and physiotherapy over the course of the rest of her life.
Ann is a member of the 221+ support group, and was a key contributor to consultations over the establishment of the Life After Cancer Clinic at the Mater Hospital under the leadership of Prof Donal Brennan. She believes the service will fill a void in providing information and support to women following their treatment to assist with their health and wellbeing.
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