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Young woman went seven years without a period – doctors found it was due to killer disease

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“I left it a few months before going to the GP and explained about the sudden stop of my period and told them about my headaches,” Abbie, from Fishguard, Wales, recalled.

“The advice I was given was to take paracetamol for my head, and to eat more to help promote regular menstruation.”

By the time Abbie was 17, she was missing class and turning in coursework late as the pain in her head felt debilitating.

“My mum grew concerned with the amount of paracetamol I was getting through,” Abbie revealed.

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“She had noticed I had stopped growing and I was losing weight, raising alarm bells which prompted another GP appointment.”

After many visits to her GP, Abbie was referred to Withybush Hospital in 2011.

Given the contraceptive pill to regulate her periods, the treatment was ineffective.

In February 2013, medics performed an ultrasound to check if Abbie had a womb.

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“My reproductive system appeared normal, so then the doctors had to consider other reasons for my headaches and lack of periods,” said Abbie.

At 19, doctors had finally discovered what had been causing Abbie’s symptoms – a walnut-sized mass on the brain.

“I was completely shocked but felt a level of relief that something had been found that could explain what was happening to my body,” Abbie revealed.

Identified as craniopharyngioma, Abbie had to undergo a 10-hour operation to have the mass removed.

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But, not too long after the operation, Abbie’s mass had grown back, prompting her to have proton beam therapy in America.

Abbie thanks proton beam therapy for saving her life; she is now campaigning alongside Brain Tumour Research to get 100,000 signatures to petition for increased funding.

“I’m not able to return to work full time as I suffer from fatigue and have to manage my daily meds to stay alive. It’s something which has taken me years to adjust to,” said Abbie.

“Brain tumours need to be taken more seriously which comes down to a lack of funding of research into the disease.”

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