Teen Dies After Migraine Misdiagnosis, Exam Stress Or Brain Tumor?

By alexa ancheta, Parent Herald February 08, 02:40 pm
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The death of a teenager due to brain tumor should be a warning to parents, who should be wary when the symptoms are recurring.
(Photo : Matthew Simmons/Getty Images)

A young girl, previously diagnosed as suffering from exam stress, died due to a brain tumor. Emma Sim of Peterhead, Aberdeenshire was then only 15-years-old when she started experiencing extreme headaches and eye problems. Her parents Heather and Graeme brought her to a doctor who said she was only suffering from a migraine brought about by exam stress.

It was in 2014 when her doctors discovered Sim had grade 3 anaplastic astrocytoma, a rare type of malignant tumor. A year after the discovery, she got an MRI and was told that her tumor was no longer operable because it had developed into a brain stem.

Emma's mom said doctors initially told them that their daughter's migraines came as a result of too much computer use, according to Mirror. Her father was even told that it was not a brain tumor. Her dad said parents should be wary of headaches among children as this could already be a serious condition.

It was only when her eyes turned that Emma was taken in for an emergency surgery, as per The Sun. Another operation removed most of her tumor but biopsy showed it was a rare and she had to undergo combined chemotherapy and radiotherapy for six weeks. Another cycle of chemotherapy was made but her mother said they never heard her daughter complain.

"She was the one who kept us going and made us laugh with her mantra: "Kill a tumor with humor," Sim's mom said.

Despite the devastating loss of their daughter at the age of 17, the family has set up The Emma Sim Fund. They are raising money for charity in her loving memory, according to The Brain Tumour Charity. Aside from fundraising activities, the organization also aims to raise awareness about brain tumors so that the pain suffered by Emma's parents, not only because of her illess but because of the misdiagnosis, would not be experienced by other families again.

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