A SHOCKED mum has told how she learnt her two-year-old daughter had ovarian cancer after the tiny tot started puberty – and the two of them developed synchronised PMT.
Adorable Brynnleigh Shepherd was healthy when she arrived on October 11, 2013; a bouncing 7lb 2oz baby.
Breeanna wants other mums to know ovarian cancer can hit at any age
But, just two years later in early 2016, she started developing pubic hair and breast tissue.
Her concerned mum, Breeanna Shepherd, 23, took her to hospital where is emerged she had a rare “cantaloupe-sized” malignant tumour on her right ovary.
She is likely to be one of the youngest sufferers of ovarian cancer in the world, and the hospital where she was treated, Saint Francis’s Hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA, is even using her as a case study.
Now, in an exclusive interview, Breeanna has revealed how little Brynnleigh has recovered well, despite having undergone surgery to remove her right fallopian tube, right ovary and the huge tumour.
Larking about in hospital, after her operation, Brynnleigh is now in remission
Thankfully, she did not require radiotherapy or chemotherapy.
Breeanna said: “My daughter really is brave and brilliant. Even after what she has gone through she is still smiling.
“She loves lifting up her top, showing her scar and beaming.
“She says, ‘My scar is beautiful. The doctors cut me open to save me’.”
Breeanna was horrified when her daughter developed pubic hair – but it saved her life
Brynnleigh’s ordeal started not long after her second birthday in October 2015 when Breeanna, who works for the supermarket chair Walmart, noticed that she “started developing” like a teenager might.
“She started developing pubic hair,” she explained. “She then developed breast tissue and seemed to have a yeast infection.”
Breeanna Shepherd Brynnleigh loves showing people her scar
She continued: “I was obviously concerned – she was only just two.
“Then, she started to behave in a teenagery way when I had my period.
“She didn’t have periods but it was certainly like she had PMT.
“Our mood swings seemed to have synced like PMT”
Common reasons for early puberty
Early puberty usually affects girls, and sometimes there is no obvious cause.
But there are some more common reasons:
- a problem in the brain, such as a tumour;
- damage to the brain as a result of radiotherapy, surgery or a tumour;
- a problem with the ovaries or thyroid gland;
- a genetic disorder
Taking her to their local doctors in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, Brynnleigh, who has a little brother Culter Cookson, now three, was initially suspected of being constipated.
But following CT scans at a local hospital it emerged there was a tumour on her right ovary.
“I was horrified,” said Brynnleigh, who lives with Cutler’s dad, Ryan Cookson, 24, who also works at Walmart. “As the doctors talked I just kept nodding my head in shock.
Brynnleigh’s daughter started developing hair under her arms and breast tissue
“I couldn’t believe there was this huge tumour in my two-year-old.
“I immediately called my parents, Tammy, 49, and Randy, 46, and doctors prepared to transfer her to the bigger Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa.”
There, on June 17 2016, she underwent surgery to have the tumour cut out.
Breeanna Shepherd Brynnleigh spent a lot of time in hospital playing with her grandfather, Randy
“It had engulfed her ovary and some of her fallopian tube so they had to slice them out too,” her mum continued. “They sliced from her sternum to pelvis.
“Afterwards it was confirmed that the tumour was cancerous. But, amazingly, she was leaping within a few days around after surgery. She was back on her feet and doing wonderfully.”
Results from a biopsy of tumour confirmed little Brynnleigh had juvenile granulosa cell tumour, a rare type of tumour which forms in the ovaries.
Breeanna documented her daughter’s journey on Facebook
Whereas ovarian cancer is the sixth most common cancer among British women, with more than 7,400 new cases each year, just 0.2 per cent of sufferers are 14 or under.
Now, around two years on, she still has regular check-ups but is in remission from the disease and is not believed her fertility is affected.
She has also reversed puberty.
Breeanna Shepherd Like her mum, Brynnleigh suffered the horrors of PMT – but she was only two
“She has blood tests and scans every six months,” her mum said. “We also visit an endocrinologist who checks her hormones to make sure they are as they should be for her age.
“But, overall, she is doing well.
“She’s amazing. I am speaking out because I want all parents to know that this can affect women of any age – even two year olds.”
What Is Trichotillomania, What Has Towie Star Sam Faiers Said About The Hair Pulling Condition And How Is It Related To Ocd?
PEOPLE of all ages and both genders can go bald, with hereditary, genetic and compulsive conditions all causing people to lose their hair.
Trichotillomania, also known as trich, and it ss a condition where someone can’t resist plucking their hairs, with TV personality Sam Faiers revealing she suffers from it.
Alamy Trichotillomania, otherwise known as trich, affects women more than men
What is trichotillomania?
The NHS website describes it as a condition where sufferers can’t resist the urge to pull out their hair.
But not just the hair on their head, but eyebrow, eyelashes, beards and pubic hair are also targeted.
It is more common in girls rather than boys, and mostly affects teenagers and young adults.
Rex Features Sam Faiers wears false eyelashes now
The urge to pull out a hair intensifies until they do so, which brings them a temporary sense of relief.
It can also be done subconsciously, where the person isn’t aware they’re doing it.
It can lead to bald, uneven patches on people’s head or thinning hair in some areas.
There is no singular cause for trich, but it can be used by some people as a method to cope with anxiety or stress.
It could also be caused by changes to hormone levels during puberty, or a chemical imbalance in the brain.
In certain cases it could be classed as a form of self-harm.
What has Sam Faiers said about the hair pulling condition?
Model and TV personality Sam Faiers revealed she has the condition, and it stems from trauma surrounding her stepdad being jailed.
The mum-of-two spoke candidly about trich in her YouTube videos, revealing she was diagnosed when she was eight.
The former TOWIE star said she later discovered its root cause after a speaking with a psychologist when she was an adult.
Instagram She used to wear mittens and dip her hands in nail repellent to try and stop
She began to pick out her eyelashes, and confesses that she still does so in her sleep despite trying multiple remedies over the years, including mittens and nail-biting repellent.
Despite her eyelashes growing back, she would just pluck them out again, and resorted to false eyelashes.
Is it related to OCD?
Trich is similar to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), as it can be caused by a chemical imbalance.
With OCD, sufferers also feel a compulsion, or urge, to complete an act.
OCD and trichotillomania can also both be triggered by a negative or traumatic event in their life, and can also be used as a coping mechanism.
I Hate The Fact My Mates Fancy Mum And She Won’t Cover Up… It’s So Embarrassing I Want To Die
AN embarrassed schoolboy has pleaded with his mum to cover up – because all his mates fancy her and it “makes him want to die”.
Carla Bellucci, 36, mum to Jermaine, 15, Tanisha, 13, and Jayden, 10, from Borehamwood, Herts., said she was taking her lead from actress Liz Hurley, 51, whose son Damian is begging her to change the way she dresses because his mates think she’s hot.
Olivia West – The Sun Jermaine says it’s “gross” his pals fancy his mum
But year 10 pupil Jermaine said he had every sympathy with Damien because, like him, he was embarrassed by his mum’s behaviour.
He confessed if he passes her in the street he pretends he doesn’t know her.
“If I see my mum and my sister in the street when I am with my mates I pretend I don’t know her or to not see her,” he confessed. “My mates see mum at school or at my house and tell me how jealous they are.
“They say they want to date her or be me and I just want to die. I wish she’d be like other mums. She should cover up. I’m embarrassed.”
Alley Einstein Carla loves posing for selfies
Jermaine told how his pals tried to befriend his mum, who has had breast implants, on social media – forcing him to take the reins of her account.
“The lads constantly try to friend her on social media and I have to go through her account and tell her who to block,” he admitted. “I wish she wasn’t on social media. It’s so embarrassing to be told mum is hot.”
Like Damien, who has confessed to snapping pictures of her mum, Jermaine has also been encouraged to photograph Carla as she poses.
“When we’re on holiday she asks me or my sister to take pictures of her,” he admitted. If she asks me to take a picture of her I deliberately mess it up so she can’t use it.”
Alley Einstein Jermaine avoids his mum if he sees her in the street
And he thinks all parents should be banned from social media or at least only have private accounts.
“I have begged her to set her account to private,” Jermaine confirmed. “I even try and sneak onto her accounts and delete pictures. My mates love trying to find other kids parents on Facebook and Twitter and then ribbing each other. I get why Damian, Liz Hurley’s son, would be embarrassed.
“My mates tell me mum is fit. I hate that because she’s my mum and it’s just gross. If I told them I fancied their mum they’d get all weird too. I hate it when they perve on my mum – I have to live with her. She should understand that.
“Why do teenagers have to suffer like this?”
But Carla, who works in retail sales, said she found her son’s mates’ comments funny – and he needed to accept she was proud of her body.
“My son complains he is embarrassed by my clothes and looks because that his mates tell him I am ‘fit’,” Carla, who is a fan of Liz Hurley, said. “He complains my jeans are too tight, or that I don’t wear clothes that are mumsy enough.
“I am not going to ever be a mum who wears twin sets and pearls. Looking good and wearing on-trend clothes is a great example to my kids.”
Olivia West – The Sun Carla says she won’t change how she dresses
She continued: “My kids know my motto is, ‘Have pride in yourself and you’ll feel great.’
“I refuse to walk around with a paper bag on my head.”
Like Liz, Carla plans to “still post photos of herself when she is 51”. “Parenting these days is complicated because mums don’t immediately become ‘old’ or ‘old fashioned’ the moment the kids are born or start school,” she explained. “Liz and I are the new generations of mums who are proud of our bodies and looks.
“Cosmetic surgery, skin care products and access to gyms mean we’re able to look better for longer and no one wants to hide that under baggy jumpers and tracksuit pants.”
Alley Einstein She loves posing for pictures – but her boy doesn’t love her doing it
“Just because I look good and am not a wrinkly doesn’t mean should change even for my son. Being embarrassed by your mother is part of growing up.
Kids will just have to get used to it. Being a hip mum means my kids get to do hip and fun things and I know they won’t give those things up.
“Liz shouldn’t back down either. She’s got a fabulous body and I hope I look that good in my 50s. Let’s face it teenage boys will always find something to complain about. That’s how we know we’re being good parents when they complain.”
Mum Is Torn After Finding Out Her Friend Who Has Three Kids Is Gay… So Should She Make Him Tell His Wife?
A MUM has started a debate online after asking for advice about her married friend who recently came out as gay – despite having a wife and family.
The helpless woman didn’t know whether she should encourage her pal to be “true to himself”, or to condemn his actions and force him to tell his family.
Getty A woman took to Mumsnet and asked for advice on her married gay pal (Picture posed by model)
Taking to the parenting forum, she said: “If your friend is gay and he just recently told you, but you suspected he’s known all along and he has a family, would you encourage him to embrace his sexuality?
“My current stance is to stay away from the issue, but my other friend says it’s hard to not be true to oneself and so he’s encouraging him.”
The mum went on to explain that the man has three children, aged nine, six and two, and may have had a change of heart about his sexuality after recently turning 40.
There was no doubt in her mind that there was another man spurring him on, and that he would still provide for his children even if he came out to his wife.
Getty – Contributor Her married friend came out of gay after many years of her suspecting, and both were confused on what to do (Picture posed by model)
One user, who believed the man should embrace his emotions, said: “He should live true to himself. Being gay and leaving his wife for a man wouldn’t make him any better or worse a father.”
But many other users were quick to criticise the man’s actions, claiming it would be selfish of him to leave his family and be “true to himself”.
One mum argued: “It’s rather selfish of him to have had a family knowing his sexual orientation now he’s going to ruin all of their lives, his poor wife has been duped for years.”
Another, who resonated with the story, said: “My dad came out as gay when I was 13 and I found it so hard to process. Your friend needs to be honest with his wife, he needs to leave.”
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