When 24-year-old Amy Flack from Jamisontown thought something was wrong with her health, she refused to take ‘no’ for an answer.
Her intuition paid off as she now prepares for brain surgery after being diagnosed with an 11mm pineal cyst in the centre of her brain.
“My symptoms only started occurring in June last year, before that I was 100 per cent normal,” she said.
“I went to several different doctors, and they just said ‘you must be stressed’.
“It was extremely frustrating because when you know something is wrong with your body, you just know.”
She recalls feeling upset as her symptoms of vertigo and continuous headaches were dismissed.
A few weeks passed and Ms Flack knew there was more to it, so she returned to her doctor and told them she wanted an MRI. Her cyst was then found.
“I knew my body very well, and I didn’t take ‘no’ for an answer,” Ms Flack said.
“As soon as I saw that I had a cyst in my brain, I immediately went to a neurologist.”
Ms Flack became emotional recounting when she was told to wait 12 months because her cyst was asymptomatic despite what she described as the exhausting feeling of blood constantly rushing to head.
“I knew that wasn’t true. The only reason I was there was because I had symptoms,” she said through tears.
“All I was asking for was someone just to believe me.
“Even some of my family just kept saying, ‘you must be stressed’.”
Her relief came in the form of renowned brain surgeon Dr Charlie Teo who, unlike her past doctors, actually believed her.
“He sat me down and said that he believes me, and he wants to take it out of me,” Ms Flack said.
“Since meeting with him, my symptoms are getting worse, my memory is getting worse. Sometimes I’ll start to stutter.”
Later this month, on August 28, Ms Flack will finally have the cyst removed from her brain and begin her long road to full recovery.
Ms Flack is now appealing to everyone, especially young women, to speak up if they feel something is wrong with their health.
“Whenever I hear someone saying they have headaches, migraines, I think what’s behind the migraine,” she said.
To read more about Ms Flack’s journey, visit www.gofundme.com/my-pineal-cyst.
Emily Newton is the Weekender’s police and political reporter. Emily is also the Weekender’s Senior Journalist.