How an eye test at Tesco & # 39; saved my daughter's life & # 39 ;: mother reveals that an optometrist spotted her two-year-old's murderous brain tumor during a checkup
- Karen Lee-Johnston brought the two-year-old Erika to the opticians in Glasgow in March
- Vision Express optometrist Aaron Spears said she showed signs of brain tumor
- Hospital research showed that Erika suffered from a craniopharyngioma tumor
- It had robbed the youth of vision in her right eye and made her struggle to walk
A mother thanked an optometrist for saving her daughter's life after he saw that she had a brain tumor during an eye test.
Karen Lee-Johnston took the two-year-old Erika to Vision Express at Tesco Silverburn in Glasgow in March after she noticed that her right pupil was constantly being deported.
The young person, known as Boo, also vomited, was very thirsty and had deteriorated due to a poor balance in crawling.
Vision Express optometrist Aaron Spears discovered that Boo showed symptoms of a craniopharyngioma tumor and referred to the hospital.
The rare mass affects around 30 people in the UK every year and is most common in children.
Karen Lee-Johnston, 33, brought two-year-old Erika (together in the photo) to the opticians in March where she was told that her daughter was suffering from a debilitating brain tumor
The young person, known as Boo, had a craniopharyngioma tumor that grew behind her eyes (circled) that had robbed her eyesight in her right eye and had her struggling to walk
About the moment she was told the heartbreaking news, Mrs. Lee-Johnston (33) said: “We were waiting in a shared ward.
& # 39; A nurse told me she would take care of Boo while talking to a doctor in a private room – I felt sick right now.
& # 39; There were many nurses and doctors in this small room and I am a real person, so I said, "This is not good news, is it?" One of the neurosurgeons said, "No."
& # 39; The doctor told me she would probably have died if we had left it for another week or two.
& # 39; One in 20 million gets this type of tumor and although it is benign, the oncologist said it is in a malignant place. & # 39;
Mrs. Lee-Johnston was told that Boo had completely lost her sight in her right eye and that she had undergone surgery to cut out the tumor and save sight in her left eye.
The widow, whose husband died in 2017, said: “Fortunately, her eyesight returned to both eyes after the operation – it was a miracle.
& # 39; People don't believe me when I explain what happened to our family and I think it's very special, but it can happen to anyone. & # 39;
The mother of three added: "Her future will not be easy, but she is alive and has her eyesight – Aaron has saved her life."
Craniopharyngiomas are not cancerous but can cause many health problems because they grow near the base of the brain, just above the pituitary gland.
The pituitary gland makes hormones that regulate important bodily functions.
The tumors can lead to growth problems in children, loss of vision, headache and a build-up of pressure around the brain that leads to disease.
Her mother took her to the opticians in Silverburn, Glasgow, after she noticed that her right eye was very widened (pictured)
The young person underwent surgery to remove most of the tumor and had to start chemotherapy to get rid of it completely
Boo will soon start her first chemotherapy cycle to further reduce the tumor.
Mrs. Lee-Johnston shares the story of her daughter as part of the National Eye Health Week.
She has urged others to pay attention to warning signs and to have them checked.
Vision Express optometrist Aaron Spears said: “Boo showed classic symptoms of a craniopharyngioma tumor growing above the pituitary gland – a pea gland that controls many vital functions.
& # 39; This explains why Boo was often unstable and had optical problems.
& # 39; Thanks to the referral she received her scans and the consultant called me back later to say that I had made a good place.
& # 39; Parents who are concerned about their children's vision should have this checked at their local optician as soon as possible. & # 39;
WHAT IS A CRANIOPHARYNGIOMA TUMOR?
Craniopharyngiomas are benign, which means that they are not cancerous. They can affect adults, but are more common in children.
The rare tumors, which normally do not spread, usually grow near the base of the brain, just above the pituitary gland – which makes hormones that control important body functions.
Because they grow close to the pituitary gland, they can cause changes in the way it works. Symptoms of craniopharyngiomas include:
- Changes in hormone levels. In adults, this can cause problems with getting an erection and irregular periods
- Growth problems in children
- Loss of vision
- An accumulation of pressure around the brain that can cause nausea or nausea
Symptoms may develop suddenly, which means that you quickly feel unwell or may develop more slowly.
Craniopharyngiomas affects only 30 Britons per year – and is responsible for between six and 13 of every 100 diagnosed brain tumors in children.
Most people are operated on. You may need radiotherapy after surgery if your surgeon has not removed all tumors.
You may also need hormone replacement therapy if you have changes in hormone levels.
A brain surgeon removes all the tumor, or only a select part, depending on where the tumor is.
Some tumors are located near important parts of the brain, such as the optic nerve and the hypothalamus.
These tumors cannot usually be completely removed.
You usually receive radiotherapy after the operation. This is to try to prevent the tumor from coming back.
You can also receive additional radiotherapy when the tumor returns.
Many people with craniopharyngioma have changes in their hormone levels. This is due to the tumor itself. Or as a side effect of treatment.
You may need to use hormonal replacement therapy to help with this. The type of hormone that you take depends on your individual needs.
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