Mum in a million: Knowle woman expecting baby despite treatment for rare cancer
HAVING undergone gruelling treatment for cancer Nikki Anderson did not think she would be able to have any more children.
But now the 27-year-old faces Mothering Sunday with the knowledge that she is expecting the bundle of joy she dared not wish for.
The Knowle mum needed fertility treatment to conceive her two-year-old daughter Tia – who was born months before her cancer was diagnosed – but this time has become pregnant naturally.
She is especially excited about the forthcoming arrival as it has given her the opportunity to focus on the future after 18 months of surgery and other treatments for cancer.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Mrs Anderson was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer after blood tests showed a hormone deficiency.
Further tests led to the discovery of a tumour bigger than a tennis ball on her adrenal gland, of which there is one above each kidney producing vital hormones.
Her cancer affects only one in a million people and is so rare that, after its removal, her tumour was cut into 30 pieces and sent to experts across the UK and United States for analysis.
Just months after starting a course of chemotherapy following the removal of the original tumour doctors discovered another tumour, which was removed, and decided to halt the chemotherapy.
Ever since Mrs Anderson has feared the cancer would return.
"I have been preparing myself for another operation because I had got so used to thinking it might come back and have got so used to hospitals, operations and treatment," she said. "Chemo was the only treatment they thought would help this rare cancer but when it didn't, they decided to see how I would go without treatment and so far, so good."
It was not until months after Tia was born that the tumour was discovered. The tumour was causing her testosterone levels to be too high, which is why Mrs Anderson had difficulty in conceiving and had trouble losing weight.
"I didn't think I could get pregnant," she said.
"We had spoken about children but I was grateful for what I had.
"I was planning a holiday and different things to keep me occupied.
"I always wanted more children but after cancer I didn't dare think about it. I thought chemo had completely ruined my body and I have still got a suppressed adrenal gland as well, so I am on steroids every day because my body doesn't naturally produce hormones."
Mrs Anderson, who also has a ten-year-old son Korben, thought she had just been a little unwell and suffering the effects of her steroids and did not consider she could be pregnant.
"I didn't believe it when I discovered I was pregnant. I was in utter shock," she said.
"When we have been announcing to friends and family I think they are just as shocked.
"It took me weeks to get my head around it and to actually feel pregnant.
"I thought I just had a sickness bug. I did a pregnancy test because there was that niggle in the back of my mind. But I still didn't believe it even when I found out."
Mrs Anderson has regular scans to check for any recurrence of her cancer and now doctors are trying to work their monitoring around her pregnancy.
At the end of January, instead of a CT scan it was decided she should have an MRI scan, because it would be less harmful to her unborn child. And the scan came back without any changes from the previous one.
"It feels overwhelming and so perfect. It feels like this is a different year and I am a different person to my friends and family, not just Nikki the cancer patient", Mrs Anderson said.
"I now get he chance at having a new life, it's just amazing."
Mrs Anderson had planned to take part in this year's Cancer Research UK Race for Life, but because she is due to give birth on September 15 – her mum's birthday -she will be cheering friends and family from the sidelines on the anniversary of her marriage to Steve.
To enter Race for Life on the Downs on July 6 or 7 visit www.raceforlife.org or call 0845 600 6050.