Mollie Mulheron (24) noticed swallowing and breathing difficulties when she made a trip to the Galapagos Islands. She was in such trouble that she almost drowned while snorkeling, reports the Daily Mail. For the doctors there, however, there is apparently no reason for great concern: they diagnosed Mollie stress as the trigger, saying the problems were “in her head”.
But even when the English teacher returned to Great Britain at the beginning of February, there was no improvement. The 24-year-old collapsed shortly after returning from shopping in a supermarket after throwing up.
Cancer diagnosis in the hospital
Mulheron was eventually taken to a hospital, the Daily Mail reports. Then came the shock diagnosis: cancer. The 24-year-old had a 15 centimeter tumor over her heart and lungs. Doctors later found out it was stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), a relatively rare type of cancer.
Symptoms of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
More than 17,000 people in Germany are diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma every year. The form of cancer includes all other malignant diseases of the lymphatic system that are not classified as Hodgkin’s lymphoma. In this case, however, there are only around 2,400 new diagnoses per year. As the disease progresses, the spleen, bone marrow, lungs, and liver can also be affected.
“Non-Hodgkin is a group of more than 50 individual lymphomas, including the particularly aggressive Burkitt’s lymphoma,” reports Heidelberg lymphoma expert Professor Mathias Witzens-Harig.
The signs of Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma are similar, common are:
• Enlarged lymph nodes
• night sweats,
• weight loss
If the bone marrow is involved, there may be a shortage of white and red blood cells and platelets (thrombocytes). Accordingly, the following signs appear:
• Lack of red blood cells: anemia
• Lack of white blood cells: susceptibility to infections
• Lack of platelets: tendency to bleed
If Hodgkin’s or non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is suspected, the diagnosis is made from a tissue sample, i.e. histologically. A lymph node, for example in the neck, is removed and examined. The result shows what form of lymphoma it is.
“Worst news of my life”
“I just cried and screamed and screamed — it was out of nowhere,” Mulheron told the portal. It was “the worst news of my life, I can’t even explain how it feels right now.” Especially bad for the young woman : The cancer was so aggressive that her doctors had to put her in a state of premature menopause as part of chemotherapy. The 24-year-old fears that she will no longer be able to conceive after therapy. As Mulheron is still young, the prognosis for a cure is good, because there are many treatment options.
psh with mpk