Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

I Didn't Really Have Time to Think about Me. I Was More Worried about Him; Mum's Horror at Diagnosis Weeks before Baby's Birth

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

I Didn't Really Have Time to Think about Me. I Was More Worried about Him; Mum's Horror at Diagnosis Weeks before Baby's Birth

Article excerpt

Byline: KATIE DICKINSON Reporter katie.dickinson@ncjmedia.co.uk

A WOMAN suffered a devastating miscarriage faced more shock news when she was diagnosed with cancer just weeks before she was due to give birth.

After the heartbreak of losing her first pregnancy, Zoe Shepherd spent the second one terrified something would happen to her baby.

But as she approached her due date and began to relax, she discovered that her own life was in danger instead.

The 29-year-old said she "cried for about two minutes" on learning the news before her thoughts turned entirely to her child.

"I didn't really have time to think about me. I was more worried about him," said Zoe, from Kingston Park, Newcastle.

"I was just determined to get him out, then they could do whatever to me."

Hours after baby Jacob was induced, Zoe was whisked away for a scan to find out how far the disease had spread in her body.

Now the new mum has told of the nightmare months that followed as she was unable to hold her son unless he was placed in her arms, and almost spent their first Christmas as a family in hospital.

Zoe and her fiance Jake were desperate to start a family, and were heartbroken when Zoe suffered a miscarriage last February.

When she found out she was pregnant again a month later, Zoe said she had 'mixed emotions.'.

"I was worried up until the 12-week mark, but when everything was okay at that stage I relaxed a bit. I was about 26 weeks pregnant and in the shower when I spotted what I thought was a skin tag on the left side of my abdomen. I mentioned it to my GP and he encouraged me to get it checked out. By the time I went for an appointment two weeks later it had grown even more."

The doctor removed the growth, but when Zoe went back five days later for her results, she was told she had stage 2 melanoma - a type of skin cancer. By then she was 37 weeks pregnant. …

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