Dying Scottish woman fights back from palliative care with £400 treatment

Linda Unwin, pictured with her mother Catherine McKnight, was diagnosed with a High Grade Glioma Glioblastoma last year. Picture: SWNS
Linda Unwin, pictured with her mother Catherine McKnight, was diagnosed with a High Grade Glioma Glioblastoma last year. Picture: SWNS
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A woman suffering from a terminal brain tumour has fought back from palliative care with the help of a medical trial which costs £400 a year.

Linda Unwin, 26, was diagnosed with High Grade Glioma Glioblastoma - an aggressive, incurable brain tumour, last February, and warned she had eight months to live.

Graphic designer Linda has been in a wheelchair since starting cancer treatment, and less than four months ago palliative care providers were sent to the family home in Kilwinning, North Ayrshire.

But with the help of a medical trial, which costs just £400 a year, Linda has fought back from the brink and has begun to walk again.

Linda’s mum, Catherine McKnight, said: “A few months ago palliative care were in because things were so bad and had us on alert, but Linda being Linda was like ‘that’s not happening’.

“She can be very stubborn.

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“So we managed to get her on the drug trial and we have had two scans and the first showed the tumour was stable but the second was stable with good shrinkage.

“She has had a third and we will get the results this week so we are full of hope that it will be more positive news.

“She is getting stronger every day. She is still in her chair but she has managed to walk when it’s a short distance, which is amazing.”

The trial, which is run by the private Care Oncology Clinic in London sees patients taking four old drugs; a statin, a diabetes pill, an antibiotic tablet and a dewormer.

It costs just £400 a year, and it is hoped it could extend Linda’s life by 26 months.

However, Catherine says the family, including her husband Tom, and Linda’s brother, also named Tom, know that ultimately the prognosis for their spirited daughter is devastating.

Catherine, 48, said: “The last five months she has slowly but surely been improving.

“We still know what we are dealing with but compared to what she was, she is doing really well.

“The scans have changed but the prognosis is still the same. It’s one of these diseases that never goes away.

“It’s just a matter of whether we can keep her stable.

“But when she was first diagnosed, they said she wouldn’t be here by now so she is proving them wrong every day.”