After months of searching for the source of pain from a toothache, 26-year-old Gemma Wood, of Wiltshire, England, finally got an answer: a neuroendocrine tumor (NET) lodged in her mouth behind her cheekbone. Except four months later, she learned that wasn’t the right answer at all, the Sun reported.
Turns out, Wood, a mother of two, had been misdiagnosed— and, by the time she received the proper diagnosis, rhabdomyosarcoma in July 2015, the cancer had spread to her lungs. Wood had been four months into chemotherapy for the NET, a cancer that affects the neuroendocrine system, when she learned of the misdiagnosis.
“My world fell apart,” Wood, now 27, told the Sun.
The University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, under which Wood sought treatment, said in a statement to the Sun that Wood’s medical history is “complicated” and that “testing of her initial biopsy did not indicate rhabomyosarcoma,” which is a soft-tissue cancer.
“This has destroyed all my faith in doctors,” Wood told the Sun. "I've even had to have counseling just to help me continue with chemotherapy because I get so scared about going back to hospital now.”
Now, Wood and her husband, Karl, parents to 2-year-old Sophia-Louise and 7-year-old Mason-Lee, are trying to raise 500 Euro on a GoFundMe.com page to throw a party with 150 loved ones to “forget cancer for a night.”
"There's a chance I won't have a very long life. I don't know how long I'll be here for,” Wood told the news site, “so I want to make memories with my family while I can.”