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Cancer Research UK provide details on lymphoma

When Abby Maxwell first found a lump in her armpit, she didn’t think it would be anything too serious.

The 22-year-old was sent for an ultrasound at University Hospital Hairmyres, but she felt “light-hearted” despite the appointment.

However, a series of biopsies left Abby in floods of tears, revealing she had non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a type of cancer that develops in the lymphatic system.

The student from Blantyre, Lanarkshire, thought she was too young to be diagnosed with cancer.

The former Aldi worker told GlasgowLive: “When you are young you don’t really think, ‘I can get cancer’. 

READ MORE ‘The doctor said it was nothing’ – Mum saves son’s life after he found a lump

“It wasn’t bothering me or anything and the day I went for the ultrasound, I was light-hearted until I walked in and talked to the doctor.

“I immediately just wanted to leave the room [when given the diagnosis] and get out of the hospital. I started crying. It was a shock.”

Abby started her chemotherapy treatment that caused her to lose hair as a result, keppra effects on fetus which took a “horrible” toll on her.

She explained that January was the “worst” month because there was a lot of unknown.

Abby said: “I took a step back from working because I didn’t want to be there. Mum had a few break downs along the line.

“Everyone surrounded me and were trying to keep my life as normal as possible.”

Despite her cancer battle, Abby tried to get out as much as possible and continue her “normal” life as a 22-year-old. 

Fortunately, she was given the all-clear from cancer in July after she completed her chemotherapy.

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She said: “I was absolutely ecstatic when I found out, part of me couldn’t believe it. 

“I was nervous but as soon as they told me, I was over the moon. My mum started crying and my sister was hugging me, it felt amazing.

“I am still feeling tired and my body is still run down but I am feeling so much better mentally. I just think now is the time to get my life back on track.”

The 22-year-old, who hopes to return to work in the new year, is now taking time out to regain her fitness and strength. 

Abby also took part in Beatson Cancer Charity’s annual ‘Off The Beatson Track’ event on August 27 – a walk that saw over 2,000 participants take on a 10K to raise money for patients and their families who are facing a cancer diagnosis.

She relied on Beatson over the course of her treatment and wants to give back, having already raised almost £500 through JustGiving.

She added: “The nurses had so much compassion and were so helpful.It’s where you want to be if you are going through such a horrible time.

“It’s massively important to give back to them and this is the biggest thing I have done all year.”

You can support Abby’s fundraiser here.

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