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'Miraculous' cancer battle sees patient defy the medical books

By West Briton  |  Posted: September 13, 2012

  • John Meteyard of Illogan.

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A REDRUTH conveyancer who was given six months to live is defying the odds two years later.

John Meteyard, from Illogan, who works for Thurstan Hoskin Solicitors, was diagnosed with an extremely aggressive, malignant brain tumour in June 2010.

He said: "I was told the tumour seeds itself through the brain and causes multiple tumours.

"It was an extremely quick killer, with no cure."

He began immediate treatment and underwent daily radiotherapy – "a high level, just off enough to kill me", and this was followed by six months of chemotherapy.

To the amazement of his oncologist, a scan in March 2011 revealed he was in remission.

Mr Meteyard said: "But around May 2011, I started losing my peripheral vision and one day in June I woke up blind in my right eye."

Experts put the loss down to the massive radiotherapy treatment.

Further scans revealed three more tumours, two of which were inoperable.

"I was put on a punitive regime of chemotherapy for as long as my body could cope," said Mr Meteyard.

In July 2011, he was confirmed as blind in one eye, with only 25 per cent vision in the other, and issued with white sticks.

In February of this year, he and his wife Diane were given pre-bereavement counselling.

Mr Meteyard said: "The oncologist told me my blood would not be able to cope with the treatment much longer.

"I was on my fifth cycle, when most people don't last beyond two.

"I was told we should ensure my affairs were in order and funeral planned."

Following another scan in March, Mr Meteyard was met by his oncologist with "a huge smile".

"He said he could not explain it, but there was no sign of any cancer in my brain.

"He said it was completely unexpected and unheard of.

"He said that it would be fair for me to say that a very significant part of what had happened to me could be called miraculous as medically he could not explain what had happened to me over the past two years," he said.

And following another scan last month Mr Meteyard is now in remission, a word not usually associated with people diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme.

Speaking to the West Briton this week, Mr Meteyard said: "I feel fine, I don't have any real side effects.

"But it could come back at any time, today, tomorrow, or in 20 years' time ... it's like living with a ticking time bomb inside your head."

Mr Meteyard highlighted the support of his wife during the ordeal.

He said: "The person suffering has an easier life than the person caring for them.

"The person caring has to watch someone they love suffer."

"Having the peace and the ability to carry on, I put down to my faith," added Mr Meteyard, who is a member of the congregation at St Illogan Church.

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