aspiring doctor diagnosed with cervical cancer at the age of 19 refused
chemotherapy to save her unborn baby.
science student, Abbie Colvin (20) from Lancashire in England, spent a year
being treated with antibiotics for cystitis as she was experiencing bleeding
she went to the doctors with her boyfriend Oakley Buchanan (21) for sexual health
screening in September 2016, tests revealed there was a serious problem with
out when I went for a sexual health screening, they saw something was wrong
with my cervix and they sent me for a colposcopy straight away,” Abbie said.
2017 the second-year student, who studies at Manchester Metropolitan
University, received the devastating news that she had cervical cancer and was
‘heartbroken’ when doctors told her she’d eventually need a hysterectomy.
relationship with Oakley was quite new at the time. We’d only been together for
a couple of months so the diagnosis was quite heavy information to be given. It
was quite a numb feeling,” she said.
accepting she’d never have a baby, Abbie went in for laser treatment to target cancer
cells on her cervix in April 2017 – but a precautionary urine test revealed she
was already pregnant.
just so unexpected. I know I’d had these symptoms but at first, the doctors just thought it was cystitis
and they kept giving me antibiotics.
out I was pregnant when I went for laser treatment on my cervix. Luckily they
did a urine test before the treatment started,” Abbie said.
being offered chemotherapy during her pregnancy, Abbie wasn't willing to take
any risks as she knew this may be her only chance to carry her own baby.
to the doctors and explained that unless it was going to kill me, if I had the
opportunity, then I was going to have this baby.
said if I chose to keep the baby they’d support me and they’d do all of my
treatment after [the baby was born],” she added.
baby” Oscar Buchanan was born on December 2017.
after giving birth, Abbie started three gruelling
rounds of chemotherapy – which she fought through while completing her exams.
hospital actually wanted to start my chemotherapy treatment at 35 weeks and I
said ‘no’ because it’s poison. I wasn’t going to put poison in my body when there’s
a little baby in there,” she said.
And now the
inspirational young mom, in her final round of chemo, is deservedly rejoicing
in raising a happy little boy and getting a first class while battling cancer
all at the same time.
Oscar was born it was literally magical – like a miracle. And in the seven
months since I’ve raised a seriously happy and healthy baby, had three rounds
of chemo and still got a first. Not to blow my own trumpet but I’m proud.”
her university offered Abbie 52 weeks off, she refused to let the pressures
of being a first-time mom fighting cancer get in her way.
continued attending lectures and completed all her assignments and exams to
achieve top marks.
to pursue her dreams of becoming a doctor, Abbie has now transferred onto a
seven-year course which includes a PHD in
treatment so far has involved chemotherapy but if her next scans aren’t clear,
the mom will undergo a hysterectomy on July 16.
undergoing really intensive chemotherapy now. It’s for three weeks and its
three days a week. It started two weeks ago.
lose my hair the first time around but this time I have – I’ve got no hair.”
booked in to have a hysterectomy provisionally. If my next scan doesn’t come
back clear I’ll have the surgery. If I’m not able to have any more children I
don’t mind because I have Oscar – I’ve got my baby.”
cancer at such a young age has made me open to anything. There’s no point in
sitting there worrying about things that are insignificant and silly things
like washing up or little arguments,” she said.
being blessed with such an amazing baby boy through this difficult time, Abbie
says she’s more motivated than ever.
other young women who are battling cervical cancer to never give up and to
always keep a positive mental attitude.
though smear tests for under 25-year-olds
aren’t available, Abbie said that if you think something is wrong with your
body to ‘stick at it’ and keep pushing for a diagnosis.
other women battling cervical cancer, you can never give up,” Abbie said.
your own body and you need to keep pushing for a diagnosis. It’s really nice to
be able to share my story and get it out there for other women, especially
people who are too young for a smear.”
scary. If I hadn’t kept going to the doctors and gone for sexual health
screening, I still wouldn’t know I had cancer. That one test saved my life.”
Source: Magazine Features