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Vicky Phelan returns to Ireland for palliative care after new tumours end US treatment

The mother-of-two said she hopes chemotherapy will keep her alive ‘until Christmas at least’.

Vicky Phelan has returned to Ireland. File photo from 2019.
Vicky Phelan has returned to Ireland. File photo from 2019.
Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

CERVICALCHECK CAMPAIGNER VICKY Phelan has returned to Ireland to receive palliative chemotherapy after scans revealed new tumours.

The activist had been undergoing trial cancer treatment in the US state of Maryland. In a post on Instagram she told followers that, as the new tumours are “far too extensive”, she is no longer eligible for the treatment.

“I have two new tumours in my neck but the worrying one is a new tumour on my bowel,” Ms Phelan wrote.

This means that I am no longer eligible for proton beam therapy since my tumours are far too extensive, i.e. I have too much disease in my body for them to zap.

The medical team at Georgetown University Hospital in Maryland recommended that Ms Phelan return home to receive palliative chemotherapy.

“I returned home earlier this week and am taking the time to reconnect with my kids and to absorb this news before I start down the chemotherapy road,” Vicky said.

The mother-of-two said she hopes the chemotherapy will keep her alive for Christmas.

“The ‘good’ news is that I can still have treatment and that this treatment will keep me alive until Christmas at least. The bad news is that the treatment I am about to start on is extremely toxic and will take its toll on my body and my mind,” she said.

Ms Phelan added that she will be taking a break from social media over the next few weeks and thanked people for their support.

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“As always, I would like to thank you all so very much for your support, your kindness, your generosity, your prayers and positive messages which continue to lift me and keep me going,” she wrote.

In April 2018, Ms Phelan settled her High Court case against a US laboratory that had examined her smear test results for €2.5 million.

In 2011, her smear test result had been reported to be clear of abnormalities; three years later she was diagnosed with cervical cancer. 

About the author:

Céimin Burke

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