Mum gives birth after horror inoperable brain tumour diagnosis

A mum in the UK has been told she has two years to live after an overlooked symptom during her pregnancy led to a devastating diagnosis.A mum in the UK has given birth after discovering that she would die within two years from an inoperable brain tumour – a devastating diagnosis she received when she was 20 weeks pregnant. Laura Mahon, from St Helens, England, started struggling to walk when she was five months pregnant, and was unable to move her right leg or her toes. An MRI scan revealed that the 29-year-old had a brain tumour – which is pushing on her motor cortex, and cannot be removed completely with surgery. By the time she was 27 weeks pregnant, her condition started to deteriorate. “I didn’t think too much about it, after all I was pregnant and was feeling tired,” Ms Mahon said, of the weeks leading up to her diagnosis. “But things got worse the next day and I could no longer move my right leg and was struggling to walk. Over the following week, I was unable to feel much of my right leg.” Her GP had initially believed her unborn daughter was pressing against a nerve – but after two scans they had a different answer for the symptom.“I was told the devastating news that I had a brain tumour,” Ms Mahon said. “They told me it had more than likely been there for years and years and had now started growing,” Ms Mahon said. “It was such a shock. I’m only 29 and didn’t think something like this could happen to me. I was so focused on the baby, but I was getting more poorly.” When she could no longer “walk properly, was being sick and tired”, Ms Mahon and her husband “made the toughest decision of our lives and decided to bring our daughter into the world at 30 weeks”. “At my planned caesarean section, the midwifery team put me under general anaesthetic so that I was totally relaxed,” she said. “They didn’t want to put any pressure on my brain because of the risk of causing further complications.” Sienna Grace Laura Mahon was delivered on November 30 weighing just 1.5kg, but developed a collapsed lung and had to be transferred to a separate hospital to her mum for specialised care. Just a week later, Ms Mahon was told that her tumour had almost doubled in size. Three days before Christmas – when her daughter was three weeks old – Ms Mahon was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer, and told she had two years to live. “Danny and I had prepared ourselves for the worst. We knew deep down what it was going to be but being told at 29 years old that you have inoperable stage 4 brain cancer and that I had just two years to live is something you can never prepare yourself for,” she said. “Hearing that said out loud was a moment we’ll never forget. “It felt so surreal, like I was leading two separate lives. Things all looked fine, like we were a happy family, then I would remember how poorly I am. But it’s so special having Sienna with us. It’s like what we had originally envisaged.” After surgery to remove part of the tumour, and a six-week course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, an MRI scan in April showed Ms Mahon’s brain tumour had stabilised, even shrinking a little bit. “That was such a massive relief, and it was nice to hear something positive,” she said. “Right now, we’re trying to get out and do nice things to make memories together, but I need to take each day as it comes. It’s hard at times and I just break down and cry. But Sienna’s lung has repaired itself and she is completely fine now. “I see others with GBMs [glioblastomas] who manage to live longer, so I am clinging to the idea that I might be one of those people. I’m fighting as hard as I can and I’m staying strong for my family.” Originally published as Mum gives birth after horror inoperable brain tumour diagnosis