February 08, 2019

'Exhausted' mom dismissed as menopausal by doctors kept telling herself she was 'fine'

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Being misdiagnosed by doctors is indeed very scary.

Shared reported that Karen Yardley was told that she was going through menopause until she begged doctors to have another look.

She went to the doctor complaining of migraines, insomnia, fatigue, and mood swings. She was told that she was going through “that time of life” and that these symptoms pointed towards menopause.

In fact, the several doctors she went to said she was showing menopausal symptoms. 

The agonizing pain went on for a couple of years and she was prescribed anti-depressants to help her cope with the symptoms.

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She said, “ I was coming up to 50 and just took doctors at their word when they said I was going through the menopause. But my symptoms got worse and worse. It felt like no one was listening to me - I felt unheard and lonely.”

She added that her children were worried about her but she tried to keep it from them. She then couldn’t see properly and had flashes in front of her eyes.

She could not pick her children up from school in the car anymore, could not her crosswords puzzles. She also could not walk properly as her legs felt heavy. The final nail in the coffin seemed to be the cluster headaches she had and the constant pain in her neck.

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Yardley was confident that all her symptoms were not just due to menopause and that there must be something seriously wrong.

When she could not handle it anymore and felt “desperate” she had to beg her doctors to investigate a little further. She even had terrible thoughts that she might die.

Finally, doctors decided for an MRI scan by a neurologist and to her shock, she discovered a golf ball-sized brain tumor by her right optic nerve.

An immediate surgery removed the tumor, but Yardley was traumatized by the ordeal. She would have been in a much better shape had the tumor been caught two years ago when she first complained.

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She was told that her tumor may have been growing for years. She was relieved it was not cancerous but devastated that the late diagnosis and surgery caused a lot of damage.

Due to the late action taken by the doctors, a large portion of her skull had to be removed. It was replaced by a metal plate in her head that resulted in 20 staples. She confessed that she feels weak in her legs even after the surgery.

Yardley shared her story and hoped it creates awareness about brain tumor symptoms and to encourage women to trust their gut when they know something was wrong.

She said that people had to shout to be heard and taken seriously. She believes that an early diagnosis is crucial to save lives and reduce disabilities. 

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