The Wight Brainy Bunch

The Wight Brainy Bunch is a small charity on the Isle of Wight providing a support network
and financial assistance to local families affected by Brain Tumours.

Karen’s Story

For a good few years I had felt unwell…tired, headaches, agitated etc. then I developed what felt like a heartbeat in the back of my head. I went to the doctors and he checked bloods and said I was in the menopause.

It seemed to get worse over time and then I couldn’t stand noise; everything seemed so loud. I couldn’t even bear hearing people eat – it made me feel very angry. I became isolated – staying in bed for days at a time – it was the only place that made me feel safe. Over the next year I started seeing flashing lights and I would vomit, I also had the feeling of liquid running out of my ears.

When I walked, I felt like I was ploughing through thick treacle. I could hear the sound of the sea in my ears. I was given migraine tablets and HRT; nothing took it away. It continued to get worse and even my right leg would be completely paralysed – I would get stuck crossing the road etc. and many times I collapsed in public, then I would have trouble with my bladder…say no more…that was just too awful.

I was finally listened to in Sept 2016 and sent for a scan – 48 hours later I was given the life-threatening news: “If we don’t try and get this tumour out, you will be dead in less than 8 weeks”.  The likely outcome was if I woke up, I would most probably be blind, have a stroke and be paralysed.

The surgeons refused to operate as the outcome wasn’t good and most likely I would die. They waited to hear from a top surgeon who was in Jerusalem who agreed to operate. He lost me during surgery but revived me and the operation was successful. I was in intensive care and high dependency in Southampton for a month. I was very sick when I was allowed to finally come home and I had intense physio to teach me to walk again. It hasn’t been easy and there’s been a lot of trauma from what happened, but I’m doing much better now Brainy Bunch have really supported me. Their support has been invaluable to me and I really want to give back to them so they can continue to help others.

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