A devastated mum-of-two was diagnosed with incurable cervical cancer – more than a year after doctors gave her the all clear.
Carrie-Anne Taitt was advised by a midwife to have a smear test after a nodule was found on her cervix following the birth of her daughter Millie in February 2017.
Weeks later the 30-year-old received a letter stating the results were negative, but Carrie-Anne, of Barnwood, Gloucester, went on to experience months of bleeding.
After concerns were then raised during an examination, she was referred to a specialist.
In May 2018, the primary school teacher was devastated when doctors confirmed she had cancer.
Despite intensive treatment Carrie-Anne was informed in January 2019 that the cancer was incurable.
Carrie-Anne, who also has a six-year-old son Leo and lives with husband Michael, 33, a gym manager is now warning women to seek second opinions.
She said: “My diagnosis came at a time when I couldn’t wait to get started in teaching. Nothing can prepare for when you are told you have cancer.
“It turned our lives upside down.
“My diagnosis and gruelling treatment regime has had a massive impact on us as a family.
“I spent both my 29th and 30th birthdays in hospital and had to miss Leo’s birthday last year for the same reason.
“I spent nearly seven weeks in hospital last year and I didn’t get to see my children during this time which was heart-breaking.
“I slept an awful lot during this time and feel that I have missed out on important milestones in my children’s lives.
“I know Millie is too young to understand what is happening, but Leo knows I’m unwell and he does get anxious when I’m in hospital.
“Despite my cancer, I’m determined to make a difference in any way that I can and doing these talks has given me a real sense of purpose.
“It has been nice to call on my training with these talks and I hope they are providing some real food for thought for young people on the issue of cervical cancer.
“The importance of this issue cannot be overstated and I want to do everything I can to spread the message when it comes to both screening and the symptoms.”
The mum-of-two was six weeks away from completing her training to become a primary school teacher when she first received her cancer diagnosis.
She managed to qualify despite gruelling chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment.
Carrie-Anne has now instructed solicitors Irwin Mitchell to examine the care and support she received in relation to her diagnosis.
Christopher Hurlston, who is representing Carrie-Anne, said: “Carrie-Anne’s story is sadly yet another devastating reminder of how cancer can affect people of all ages.
“She has a number of concerns about the care she received which we are investigating.
“Despite this and the uncertain future she faces, Carrie-Anne continues to show tremendous courage in her battle against the disease and her determination to help others is hugely inspirational.
“Through our work we often see the devastating impact that cervical cancer can have.
“It is vital that women are aware of the symptoms and take part in the screening programme.
“We are determined to support Carrie-Anne in any way we can and believe that her efforts will make a difference to many young lives. She is doing some truly amazing work.”