Caregiver Janet Sykes, 44, believed that spending too much time in the blazing sun—where temperatures have reached a record high this year—was to blame for her headaches and confusion.
Following her service as a volunteer outside at a local fair in May, Janet began to experience the symptoms.
She was recommended to a Reading hospital for an MRI scan because the excruciating headaches persisted.
Tragically, it turned out she had a fatal tumour on her brain a week later.
Janet was informed the following morning that the mass was a high-grade glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and that it was unlikely she would survive more than five years.
Janet is eager to speak out as part of a campaign to raise awareness of the signs of GMB as temperatures are expected to reach UK records.
When she heard the outcome, she remarked, “I was in floods of tears.”
I was devastated when I learned that I had terminal brain cancer a week after assuming I had sunstroke.
Janet underwent debulking surgery to have the tumor’s majority removed a month after hearing the heartbreaking news.
Janet added: ‘Before I went in to surgery, doctors told me that I could be left with life-changing injuries, which is why there is still half the mass on my brain.
‘I am currently receiving radiotherapy and chemotherapy to target the remaining cancer.
‘So far I am half way through a six-week course of radiotherapy and a week into chemotherapy and I feel well.
‘I know that this may change but I am very much of the mind of dealing with my diagnosis one day at a time.’
Janet is due to finish her treatment at the end of this year and will be monitored with regular scans to check for any regrowth.
With their two young children, Janet and her husband Steve have been upfront about her disease.
It was difficult telling the kids, she admitted.
We took them out of school, spent the day as a family, and had an open, emotional dialogue with them during lunch.
“Having a brain tumor wasn’t something I worried about, for sure. You donate money to the cause, and then you go about your day,” says the person.
“I’m trying not to think beyond January 2023 at the moment, but my hope is to get back to “regular life,”‘ the speaker said.
In the UK, GBM Awareness Week starts on Monday.
GBM is the most frequently identified high-grade brain tumor in adults, according to Brain Tumour Research.
There is now no cure for it, it is rapidly expanding, and the average survival duration is only 12 to 18 months.