I was never taken seriously - Yamour's story

Published: 17 July 2023
Yamour was diagnosed in 2016 with stage 4 non-Hodgkin lymphoma when she was aged 21. Her worries about symptoms were dismissed at first by local health services until she was eventually diagnosed. Here she discusses her experience.

Yamour's story of being diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Yamour visited her GP about her symptoms, who put them down to other ailments.

“When I would tell the doctor, “I don’t feel well, I am very fatigued, my throat is aching, and my stomach is very bloated,” they would say it is IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).”

She went to her local hospital’s A&E after experiencing night sweats, black outs, and more, but even there her worries were dismissed.

"I was never taken seriously.”

Yamour was eventually diagnosed with cancer  after fainting at a wedding. Finding herself in an ambulance, she asked them to take her somewhere different, as she had lost hope in her local hospital, which was closest. Instead, she was taken to Whipps Cross where a brain scan and other tests confirmed her diagnosis.

She was diagnosed with stage 4, diffused large B- cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma with central nervous system spread to her brain.

"I had to take control to make sure I got the best treatment, so we arranged for me to see a private consultant who referred me to UCLH. It was a huge relief."

Before starting treatment, Yamour’s doctor discussed ways they could save (preserve) her fertility, but as she was diagnosed at such a late stage in her cancer, there wasn’t enough time and she had to start treatment right away. She is currently on hormone replacement treatment (HRT) as her cancer treatment brought on early menopause.  

Over six months, she was treated with 24 sessions of chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant. Yamour is now in remission.

“My mother and I were in this together, since she greatly supported me and was beside me no matter what. She stayed with me throughout it all, and she's now gone on to be a 'voice' in the Turkish Kurd community to support others affected by cancer."

Yamour and her mother looking at a laptop
Image: Yamour and her mother

You can watch Yamour talk about her experience with her mother, Isaf in the video below.


People share their cancer stories in their language