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1. A groom-to-be known for his one-liners was horrified to be diagnosed with a brain tumor — after losing the ability to crack a joke. Andrew Llewellyn, 34, was known for being the center of a conversation with his amusing stories and wisecracks. When he could no longer remember his favorite jokes — or find the right words to make funny remarks — he became concerned.
His GP ran tests. While waiting for the results, he suffered a seizure. Doctors discovered he had an egg-sized tumor and a cyst pressing on the part of the brain used for speech. Llewellyn underwent a four-hour operation to remove the growths, and days later he was back to his razor-sharp self.
2. Eugene Finney was subjected to a vicious attack by a shark and says if it weren't for the fearsome predator, he'd be dead.
The father-of-two suffered cuts and bruises and was left in significant pain after a shark smashed into him while he was swimming off the California coast. When he went to the hospital to get checked out, doctors found something more sinister — a cancerous tumor, which, thankfully, they were able to remove. Thanks to the early discovery, it looks like he will make a full recovery.
3. The social media site Reddit may have a bad reputation for offensive content and trolls, but there are also gems of valuable knowledge — and even information that can save a life.
When Reddit user CappnPoopdeck posted a rage comic in 2012 on the experiences of a male friend who had jokingly taken a pregnancy test and gotten a positive result, he intended the post as entertainment for the masses. Instead, various commenters alerted him the test could be an indication of cancer. The most popular response read, “If this is true, you should check yourself for testicular cancer. Seriously. Google it.”
Pregnancy tests produce a positive result upon the detection of the hormone chorionic gonadotropin, which is produced not only by pregnant women but also by men with testicular tumors.
CappnPoopdeck's friend visited the doctor and found a small tumor in his right testicle.
4. Avery Fitzgerald is only 2, but his mother noticed something about him that gave her an ill feeling. Julie Fitzgerald explained that whenever she saw him in certain lighting, she noticed something strange about one of his eyes. After taking a picture of him, Julie realized one of his pupils was entirely white, instead of the typical red-eye seen in most flash photography.
It turned out to be retinoblastoma. 75% of Avery's eye was covered in tumors, and it had to be removed. Doctors said if they had waited too much longer, his cancer could have spread.
5. The cohost of HGTV series Flip or Flop, Tarek El Moussa, has been battling thyroid cancer since 2013 and has a fan to thank for helping him find out about his illness.
Ryan Read is that fan. She's also a trained nurse. When Read spotted a lump on El Moussa's neck during an episode, she contacted the production company. According to the Independent, she sent an email saying “This is not a joke. I'm a registered nurse. I've been watching ‘ Flip or Flop.' I noticed that Tarek has a large nodule on his thyroid, and he needs to have it checked out.”
The email prompted El Moussa to get a biopsy of the lump, which he was previously told was benign. That's when he found out that he had thyroid cancer, which had spread to his lymph nodes.
Thanks to the eagle-eyed Read, El Moussa was able to catch the illness before it spread farther. He had the nodule removed and after receiving treatment, he's now in remission.
6. A mom was in for a shock after doctors told her what was under a birthmark which exploded during pregnancy. Mother-of-five Sam Davies had lived with the blemish on her forehead all her life. Despite being bullied about the mark by schoolmates who called her "the unicorn," she thought nothing more of it. However, after the blemish burst, the 31-year-old discovered there were THREE cancerous tumors underneath.
Doctors carried out life-saving surgery that left part of her skull exposed. She later confirmed she isn't planning on having any more children “just in case the monster wakes up again."
7. Maureen Burns in Rugby, England has a 10-year-old mixed breed collie named Max, who saved her life. The 64-year-old realized something was wrong when Max started acting strangely. He kept sniffing Maureen's breath and nudging her right breast. Max's odd behavior prompted Maureen to check her breasts, and she discovered a small lump in the right one, but the growth did not show up on a hospital mammogram.
Still convinced that something was wrong, she persuaded surgeons to do a biopsy. Maureen's hunch was proved right when the results confirmed there was a lump — and it was malignant. She's had surgery to remove it followed by radiation treatment, and her prognosis is excellent. Mrs. Burns is convinced that she is alive today because of her dog's keen sense of smell.
8. A woman who thought she was pregnant has been left devastated after her "baby bump" turned out to be an 11lb tumor. Heartbroken Madalina Neagu, 42, thought she was in labor when she arrived at the hospital with severe pain in her abdomen. After carrying out emergency tests, doctors from Botosani County Hospital in Romania were stunned to find a large tumor inside her uterus.
Neagu had complex emergency surgery lasting several hours to remove the tumor and she is expected to make a full recovery.
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