Vicky Phelan returns to Ireland with a "heavy heart" after diagnosis of further tumours 8 months ago

Vicky Phelan returns to Ireland with a "heavy heart" after diagnosis of further tumours

"With a very heavy heart, I made the decision to return home to Ireland."

Cervical cancer campaigner Vicky Phelan has returned home from the United States to receive palliative chemotherapy after doctors discovered a number of new tumours.

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Phelan had been in Maryland since the beginning of this year where she was participating in an immunotherapy drug trial, however, she made the decision to return home last week.

Taking to her social media accounts on Sunday, Phelan said: "It's been a couple of weeks since I posted an update. That's because, since my last update, I have had some bad news.

"Unfortunately, following a PET scan which my radiation oncologist at Georgetown University Hospital ordered, I have some new tumours. I have two new tumours in my neck but the worrying one is a new tumour on my bowel’."

The mum-of-two added that the discovery means she is no longer eligible for proton beam therapy since the tumours are "far too extensive".

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"I have too much disease in my body for them to zap," she added.

"So, the recommendation from the team at Georgetown University Hospital was for me to return home for systemic therapy.

"All of this happened over the space of a few days when decisions had to be made very quickly."

Phelan said that she made the decision to return home to Ireland "with a very heavy heart" as is taking the time to reconnect with her kids and to absorb the news before starting down "the chemotherapy road’’.

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"The 'good' news is that I can still have treatment and that this treatment will keep me alive until Christmas at least," she said.

"The bad news is that the treatment I am about to start on is extremely toxic and will take its toll on my body and my mind."

The Limerick mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer after a false negative cervical smear test carried out as part of CervicalCheck and has been campaigning ever since.