A trip to the optician’s turned into a shocking medical discovery for a 45-year-old mother of three, who found out she was harbouring a large brain tumour instead of what she thought was an eye infection.
Marcia, a company director from Oxford, woke up one day to blurry vision which she initially dismissed but as her vision worsened, she decided to get her eyes checked at Specsavers in Cowley.
The optician was so alarmed by what they saw that she was referred to John Radcliffe hospital, where doctors confirmed the discover of a ‘massive brain tumour’ that could have cost Marcia her sight if left untreated.
Marcia told the Mirror: “I thought I was going to be diagnosed with an eye infection when I went to my doctor in November 2022 as I was starting to go blind – I had very blurred vision. I was struggling to drive.
“They told me they thought it was an eye infection and they gave me some antibiotics – it didn’t improve anything and in January I called back and said something isn’t right and I got a referral to ophthalmology.”
By January the condition had worsened, and her optician was able to get her referred to the hospitak on the same day, where they made the shocking discovery.
She said: “I was there for about five hours, they did a series of tests on my eyes, they do blood tests and a CT scan, and they sat me down and said that I had a benign brain tumour.
“That’s how I found out, I thought I was going to have an eye infection but I actually had a brain tumour.”
While Marcia’s tumour was benign, it was significantly large and was causing pressure on her brain, leading to her vision problems.
Describing hearing the news, she said she had “tears streaming down her face from shock” as she discussed treatment opticians, learning she’d need to undergo surgery to remove it and was referred to another hospital to speed up the process.
She said: “I was really grateful because Charring Cross is a very busy hospital, but they are quick to respond to things and adapt and respond to things. The team were absolutely brilliant. Had the response not been so quick, I would probably be blind.
Since surgery, Marcia’s vision has improved beyond expectations, with her eyesight now better than 2020.
Speaking of the size of her tumour, she shared: “An average brain tumour is 10mm and mine was 2.9cm, it was massive – that’s why there was so much pressure.”
Motivated by her experience, Marcia is now keen to raise awareness about brain tumours and urges anyone experience symptoms to get them checked.
She said: “Because mine was so large, it took them about six hours to get it out. I’m very glad I went, if I hadn’t I would have lost my vision and wouldn’t have been treated so quickly.”
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