One woman was shocked to learn that she had Volvo cancer, thinking she had a dirty Thrash case.
Caroline Powell, 51, has been suffering from thrush for some years – a common yeast infection that causes itching around the vagina.
He first saw a doctor in February 2019, when the scar changed color and became a lump, and his doctor immediately sent him for a test.
In March 2019, she was diagnosed with stage III valvular cancer – which is especially rare in pre-menopausal women.
The main symptoms of cancer are persistent itching, pain or soreness in the vulva, lumps in the area or burning on the altered skin and forehead.
Caroline, of Rugby, Warwickshire, was completely blinded by her diagnosis, especially when she was otherwise fit and feeling good.
Prior to her diagnosis, Caroline enjoyed a thriving social life ملاقات meeting her six-year-old boyfriend, Adam, 48.
Talking about her assessment, Caroline said: “It was devastating.
“Valvular cancer usually affects women in their 60’s. I was barely 50, so it was a real shock. The doctors explained that the cancer had spread to my lymph nodes and pelvis.
“I just kept thinking, ‘This can’t be good.’
“In a way, it didn’t really sink in.”
In June 2019, Caroline was given a 26-day intensive course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy that spanned six weeks.
He said: “I was going to the hospital five days a week for six weeks. I had chemotherapy and radiotherapy at the same time, so I would do two treatments a day.
“I was in a weird kind of bubble. Like I was doing something every day, I didn’t have time to be on it, I just had to be positive.
“My treatment was severe, but the doctors were concerned about how aggressive my cancer was.”
When her treatment ended in August 2019, her trial was far from over, as doctors discovered that cancer cells were still present in her lymph nodes.
He said: “Radiotherapy burned my skin completely.
“I didn’t lose my hair, but my skin burned badly and it hurt a lot. I still have to use steroid cream on it.
“I also needed three monthly scans to monitor my cells, to see if the cancer was growing.
“I was relieved to be alive but knowing it could come back left me scared about my future.”
Caroline was terrified in July of this year, when a doctor noticed that her skin had turned red and thick with radiotherapy.
“I had this moment where I thought cancer was coming back. It was incredibly scary,” she said.
Fortunately for Caroline, it was a false alarm – immediately following the wonderful news that she was forgiven.
“I’m still being monitored, but I’m sorry,” he said.
What are the symptoms of valvular cancer?
Symptoms of valvular cancer may include aches, pains, or persistent itching of the outside of the vagina, including the labia, clitoris, and glands.
The skin around the vagina may be thick, bulging or colored, and wart-like growths may appear on it.
Other obvious symptoms include bleeding from the vulva and bleeding spots, as well as open sores in the vulva, mole swelling and burning pain when urinating.
“My cancer cells have stopped growing and doctors think they are benign now.
I still need three monthly checks for the next five years to monitor my lymph nodes but I am still in good health.
Caroline Cowade was forced to build a shield during epidemics because she was a high-risk person.
“I was forced inside and couldn’t see anyone. It was especially heartbreaking, but I had no choice but to stay safe.
“My working hours were also reduced, so along with my health problems, I was struggling financially. It was a lot of execution and it was a particularly difficult time.
A lavender candle sent as a gift from a friend encouraged Caroline to consider making a candle herself.
He said: “I started making prototypes to test on my friends in April 2020 and just three months later in July I decided to open my own business.
“Making candles gave me a purpose during the lockdown. It gave me a source of comfort in such a small space.
Caroline has continued her business as a side hostel, selling her creations on an environmental app called OliveMed as well as on her website.
He said: “I still have a day job, but every candle I sell makes me very happy.
“There’s something about making candles when I’m doing everything that gives me so much comfort.”
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