Family

My baby saved my life

After a 38-hour labour, this new mother suffered a seizure. But the scare ultimately helped doctors discover a deadly tumour the size of a golf ball growing inside her.

A mother from Staffordshire, England, has thanked her baby daughter for saving her life.

Catherine Dell, 39, endured a 38-hour labour before doctors performed an emergency caesarean to bring her little girl Jessica into the world.

But just hours after the police detective welcomed her daughter in February 2014, she suffered a violent seizure.

When doctors ran a CT scan to find the root of the cause, they discovered Catherine had a tumour on her brain that was 4cm long – the size of a golf ball.

“I had no symptoms whatsoever, no headaches or eyesight problems. I would never have known,” she said.

Medics believe that the long labour had deteriorated her body’s natural defences of the tumour, resulting in the seizure.

Two months after it was discovered, she had an operation to remove it. It was a benign Ganglioglioma Grade One tumour.

Speaking about how terrified she was of the operation, she said: “My mortality was thrown into stark focus and I struggled to bond with my daughter in the fear that I was going to die and never be there for her”.

Catherine’s recovery has been a long road. She was suffering seizures for some time as an after-effect of the surgery, and her hair took a long time to grow back over the scar that stretches across her scalp.

She’s now using her story to raise awareness and funds for The Brain Tumour Charity.

“I regained my confidence and fitness and crucially I’ve caught up on the time I lost with my daughter,” she said.

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