Stacey Chatwin was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer recently and wanted to raise awareness about the disease within Yass Valley. She has since received treatment, and we are fortunate to report that she is now completely cancer-free.
Mrs Chatwin underwent surgery on Wednesday the 23rd of September, which involved doctors opening her throat and removing cancer. The tumour was 1.7cm and was removed along with her thyroid in a procedure that lasted for 3 hours.
She spent 2 hours in recovery and then stayed in the hospital until being released on Thursday the 24th of September. However, Stacey reports she was readmitted on Friday the 25th.
“I had low calcium levels which can cause a lot of different symptoms. It felt like I had spiders crawling over the back of my head, so I returned to the hospital to be checked out,” said Mrs Chatwin.
She stayed in the hospital again until Tuesday the 29th of September while they monitored her calcium and helped to return it to normal. Mrs Chatwin is currently taking calcium supplements to maintain the proper levels and is also on Thyroxine for the rest of her life to regulate hormones that the Thyroid controls.
The doctors were confident in their work, and Mrs Chatwin did not require radiation after the surgery, which she noted was a surprise. The scar left from the surgery has healed very well and very fast.
“I have a lot more energy now, and it has made a big difference. I have also started to lose some weight,” said Mrs Chatwin.
A mother of two, Mrs Chatwin had two weeks off work while she recovered, and her husband was granted leave to take care of her and the children. Mrs Chatwin noted that her husband’s employer was very generous in giving Mr Chatwin time off and was understanding of the situation.
In four weeks, Mrs Chatwin is required to have another blood test to check her thyroid levels and every six months to a year after that. This is a precaution to make sure everything is working as intended, and there are no complications from the surgery.
“I try to smile a lot more and be thankful basically. Live life to the fullest; don’t take it for granted. Do what you can do, one step at a time, one day at a time,” said Mrs Chatwin.
Mrs Chatwin sought medical advice after a feeling of not being able to swallow correctly didn’t subside after a month. “If you notice any change in your body, please seek out medical advice.”
Mrs Chatwin is the perfect example of a cancer treatment success story. She was diagnosed then treated and is using the experience to educate other people in the hope of increasing survival rates.
By Ryan Betts