Linzi said: ‘Probably typical of everyone who is at a young age, the doctor was very dismissive.
‘They said ‘it’s probably IBS’ – then they did the routine blood test and took a stool sample, then it was all forgotten about
‘I just knew myself that something wasn’t right.
‘I still had bleeding, there was too much blood and I was the one who pushed for further tests.
‘I went back to my GP in April and told them ‘this just doesn’t feel right at all and I just don’t buy that it’s IBS’.
‘I naively thought that it couldn’t be cancer as nothing had ever been mentioned by the medical professionals.
‘I didn’t in a million years expect the results to come back showing bowel cancer.
Symptoms of bowel cancer:
Symptoms of bowel cancer include:
- a persistent change in bowel movements – going more often, with looser stools and sometimes abdominal pain
- blood in the stools
- abdominal pain, discomfort, or bloating always brought on by eating
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms for a prolonged period of time, speak to your GP.
‘I was absolutely devastated when they took me into a little side room by myself to tell me – it’s not what I expected at all.’
Linzi is now fundraising £22,000 to pay for an intravenous treatment that’s not available on the NHS in Scotland, called Avastin. The cycles of the drug cost £2,200, and Linzi and her husband Mark hope they will help extend her life.
So far the mum has raised £11,950, and will begin her treatment in April.
‘My frustration is with the doctors, it doesn’t enter their head – if you’re young they just think it’s IBS, that’s their first reaction,’ said Linzi.
‘They never consider the possibility that it could be bowel cancer and decide to send you for a colonoscopy.
‘If I went when I was 60 they would have sent me for a colonoscopy right away, but when I presented these symptoms at age 35 that’s not the doctors initial reaction.
‘Unfortunately, by the time younger people do get diagnosed because we go through the process – it’s too late for us.
‘I literally cannot think about my situation day-to-day, it’s like I’m talking about myself in the third person.
‘If I do think about it I will get very depressed and part of cancer is the mental battle to keep yourself going.
‘So I just can’t think about it as I want to spend as much time with my kids as I can.
‘I want my children to know I’ve done everything I can to be with them for as long as possible. It really is so much more special the time I’ve got with them.’
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