Brain tumour: Cancer Research UK on 'different types' in 2017

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Almost 11,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with a brain tumour each year. Classed as a cluster of cells that multiplies in an uncontrollable way, brain tumours can trigger various symptoms, ranging from headaches to vision problems. But Katie Dunn didn’t suspect anything until she went for an eye test.

A 30-year-old woman shared that an eye test saved her life, as it led to a diagnosis of a large tumour on her brain.

She was diagnosed with a meningioma, which describes a primary central nervous system tumour.

Beautician Katie Dunn said the meningioma could have been “both life-changing and even life-limiting” if it had been left undetected.

The tumour was found after an optician spotted abnormalities during a routine test and referred Katie for an MRI scan.

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Katie, from Hampshire, said: “I feel like the eye test saved my life and eyesight.

“As if it was left any longer, I could have lost my vision completely due to it pressing on my optic nerve.”

Katie’s MRI scan revealed the shocking discovery of a large tumour on her brain in February 2021.

She has since had two surgeries and underwent fertility preservation before starting radiotherapy in December 2022.

She said: “The type of tumour I have is slow growing which means I could have had it for years.

“Had it been left undetected then it could have caused other issues, both life-changing and even life-limiting.

“I rely on my eyesight for my job, and I drive too, so it would take away my livelihood and independence.”

Katie, who is telling her story through Brain Tumour Research, is now being monitored with regular scans.

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She said: “I’ve had some hair loss where the radiotherapy was targeting the mass and my nose and throat are still recovering from the second surgery as they cut away what they could of the tumour via my nose.

“Other than that, I feel fortunate to be able to share my story to help raise awareness.

“I’m incredibly thankful to my neurosurgeon, Mr Mathad, and radiotherapy consultant, Dr Enrico Clarke, who have looked after me.

“It’s made me realise that even when you don’t feel that you’re strong enough to deal with something like this, when it comes to it, you somehow find the strength within you.”

Katie is now planning to take part in the 10,000 Steps a Day in Challenge in February 2023.

Mel Tiley, community development manager at Brain Tumour Research, said: “We’re grateful to Katie for sharing her story with us as well as fundraising an incredible amount and we wish her well with her ongoing scans.”

To sign up to the charity challenge, people are invited to join a special Brain Tumour Research Facebook Group or set up a JustGiving page.

Mel added: “The best part is that you can complete your steps wherever you are.

“Head to your local park and enjoy the fresh air. Take a new route around your community every day. Walk on the treadmill at the gym. Go for a wander during your lunch break at work. Stay home and complete your steps around your house or garden.It’s your challenge, your way.”

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