Burnley woman, 24, told 'we don't give out brain scans willy nilly' had brain tumour

  • Claudia Laird spoke to Granada Reports' Gamal Fahnbulleh and Lucy Meacock

A Burnley woman with an undiagnosed brain tumour who was told "we don't give 24-year-olds brain scans willy nilly" is now campainging for a change of practice in healthcare.

Claudia Laird, went to see a medical professional on nine occasions to try and get to the bottom of why she felt so unwell.

Just a week later, she was diagnosed with a brain tumour.

Claudia said: "I think the initial reaction was trusting of the GP. I was in shock after because I found out I because definitely needed that brain scan.

"It was all quite quick - they weren't sure what was on the brain at first. It was all up in the air, I can't believe I went through that.

"We were just waiting for the doctors to tell us the outcome. It was challenging, but more so looking back on it now. At the time, you don't know the outcome."

The scan showing the mass on Claudia's brain Credit: Claudia Laird

Claudia had been suffering with confusion, hallucinations and fatigue.

She said: "I was asleep all the time. My friends would call me lazy. I thought it was because I was working long hours.

"I walked into a window thinking it was a door. I spent a night in bed with my mum and dad because I was hallucinating."

Doctors had put this down to what they thought was gastroenteritis. Claudia then underwent an eight hour operation. Doctors told her if she had not had it within a few hours or days, it could have been a very different story.

She is now training to be a paediatrician, to give people the same level of care. She is aware of the difficulty she had getting diagnosed and does not want the same mistakes made twice.

Claudia is now training to be a paediatrician. Credit: Claudia Laird

Claudia said: "We need everybody to understand the difficulty of getting that diagnoses. It took me over 9 times to get that diagnoses.

"I went to opticians, GP and A&E just to push to say I really don't think something is right here.

"I want to see some changes, some research, funding into brain tumours. 1% of cancer research goes into brain tumours."

The NHS lists the symptoms of a brain tumour as:

  • headaches.

  • seizures (fits)

  • persistently feeling sick (nausea), being sick (vomiting) and drowsiness.

  • mental or behavioural changes, such as memory problems or changes in personality.

  • progressive weakness or paralysis on one side of the body.

  • vision or speech problems.

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