A MORAY woman who had a 16-pound cancerous cyst removed from her body has completed a remarkable turnaround in her life by finishing a five-kilometre road race for charity.
Eilidh Milligan walked the majority of the Aberdeen Race for Life, which raised money for Cancer Research UK, with mum Anne.
Such a challenge would have seemed impossible just a few months ago, with Eilidh recovering from cancer after going through two life-saving operations.
But now cancer-free, the 27-year-old is hoping her inspirational story can help others suffering from the disease.
"I am glad still to be here, and I am glad I did the Race for Life to give something back," said Eilidh, who lives on Birnie Drive, Elgin. "Hopefully, they will use the money to find some sort of cure."
In December, 2009, having been suffering from severe pain in and around her stomach, Eilidh was admitted to Dr Gray’s Hospital in Elgin. It was decided she needed an immediate operation, but surgeons were left dumbstruck when they began the procedure.
Inside Eilidh, they came across a 16-pound malignant growth attached to her pancreas.
Luckily for Eilidh and her family, the skilled surgeons were able to remove the cyst there and then without it leaking.
She was then transferred to the high-dependency unit at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, but despite requiring swift surgery she was ruled too ill to operate on.
It was only in March, 2010, that surgeons – under the leadership of specialist Dr Irfan Ahmed – were able to carry out the life-saving procedure to remove her pancreas, spleen, lymph nodes and part of her stomach.
However, even after completing the operation, Anne said Dr Ahmed had stated his belief that the cancer was incurable.
"It’s a miracle. There was a time when doctors had only given her two weeks to live. They couldn’t believe it," said Anne (64), who lives on Young Street in Burghead.
"Hopefully this will give a bit of hope to people."
For more on this story, see this week's 'Northern Scot'