Lorna-Rose's story

Lorna-Rose's story

Lorna-Rose was diagnosed in 2005 with a Pilocytic Astrocytoma and underwent surgery to diagnose and debulk.

She experienced persistent headaches, balance and coordination problems and migraines which gave her blurred and double vision before being diagnosed.

“It took me two and a half years to be diagnosed with Derek, the name I've given my tumour," she says.

“I do remember the earaches, the hearing loss, the headaches, the blurred vision and the worried look on my mums face each time I told her about these symptoms, along with the embarrassment of being the only one of my friends who hadn't begun puberty yet."

“My parents knew something wasn't right, so why weren't the doctors picking up on it? Every time we went back to the doctors they would tell me I had an ear infection and put me on some antibiotics. When I realised I was losing my hearing, they had my ears syringed more times than I care to recall. It took a locum doctor to look through my notes and pick up on symptoms that had been there for years."

“Not only is it unfair for a child or young adult to go so long before being diagnosed but it's unfair on the parents who have to watch their child be in pain."

With two children herself, the HeadSmart campaign is more poignant to Lorna-Rose.

This campaign is one of the most important things to support, not only as a brain tumour patient myself, but as a parent too. The idea that my children or their friends could have symptoms overlooked to then suffer the consequences of late diagnosis, is a scary, yet preventable scenario.

- Lorna-Rose

Being a mum of two young boys gives Lorna-Rose the determination to manage her life after diagnosis.

“They inspire me in every sense. I try and be a better mum, a better person. I like the fact that they are the reason I get out of bed in the morning," she says.