Mum with lung cancer denied funding for treatment
Bradley Stout Miller from St Helens had just turned 18. He was happy, active and enjoyed a vibrant social life. Then, suddenly, he started losing weight at an alarming rate.
He told the Liverpool Echo: “I had become so skinny and my mum kept saying that I did not look like the same person.”
Bradley, who had a demanding job as a carer, added: “At the time I just thought I was tired from work.”
When one day he woke up and could no longer get out of bed, his mother made him visit a GP.
Just days after his birthday, in September 2022, he was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma.
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Bradley said he did not think something like this could “ever happen to him”. He said: “I used to work a lot and was struggling to breathe, I had shortness of breath even when I was in the shower. I used to wake up in the night and I would be soaking with sweat.”
Doctors ran tests and found a mass in his neck, later revealed to be an uncommon and aggressive type of cancer that affects the lymphatic system – part of the body’s germ-fighting immune system.
There are just over 2,000 new cases of Hodgkin lymphoma in the UK each year, responsible for around 300 deaths.
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Bradley, a former pupil of the Sutton Academy, said: “After the diagnosis, I lived in denial for a while and when I had my first round of chemo I was bed bound for weeks and was in a wheelchair.
“Then I started to lose my hair which was one of the hardest parts to go through. My hair was such a massive thing to me and especially at my age.”
Bradley underwent 12 cycles of chemotherapy between November 2022 and May 2023.
He said he suffered from bouts of depression during that time and had to see a therapist, as he did “not know how to handle everything.”
Bradley has now rung the end-of-treatment bell at Clatterbridge Cancer Centre and is awaiting his results. He said: “When I rang the bell everyone was in tears, all the way through chemo that was all I spoke about. It was such an emotional day and a really good day when I got to do it.
“Right at this minute I feel like myself and everything is going a lot better. My hair is growing back and I have put weight on.
“But I can’t start living my life again until I get my results next month, I feel better in myself but I don’t know if I am cancer-free… I just never thought this would happen to me. I was just a normal person.”
According to Cancer Research UK, 94.2 percent of people in England diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma aged between 15 and 44 survive their disease for ten years or more.
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