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Megan's parents weep with joy.

Byline: By Liz Hands

The parents of little Megan Armstrong have got the great news they were longing for ( her brain tumour has stopped growing.

Megan, four, was called back to Newcastle General Hospital on Monday for what her consultant described as her most important medical check so far, to determine whether or not her cancer is in remission.

She had already had a scan in July, which showed her tumour had grown by 15pc, but her doctors believed the result might not be accurate because they had just changed their scanning software.

And, to the delight of Megan's parents Philip and Sandra, both 36, they were right.

Philip cried so hard at the good news he had to pull the car over as the family drove home from the hospital.

"Megan's tumour hasn't grown at all," said Philip, a store manager, yesterday. "We've been through two months of hell waiting for this scan.

"We'd managed to hold it together until Megan was taken away from us to be scanned.

"Then, when her doctor came back into the room, he had a huge smile on his face and said it was good news. Sandra just burst into tears.

He explained: "They think it's just a lump of hard tissue now, not cancerous any more. There's no way of getting at it to check because it's embedded too far in her brain.

"But, she can live to be an old lady with it still there, just as long as it doesn't grow. They're never going to give us the all clear, but they've said if we can get to 10 years without it showing any change, then they don't think it will grow any more."

Megan was diagnosed with a brain tumour when she was 14 months old ( after Philip and Sandra battled to convince doctors she had cancer ( and, at the time they were told she only had four weeks to live.

But, now Megan, of Castlefields, Prudhoe, and her family ( she has a brother Edward, 11, and sister Kyra, eight months ( are looking forward to the rest of the year.

Megan started Mickley First School, near Prudhoe, last Wednesday and her parents had feared she would spend more time in hospital than the classroom if the scan brought bad news.

"Megan loves school. She's exhausted at the end of the school day. She just wants to go straight to bed when she gets in, but she loves it," said Philip.

"We've got to go back for another scan in January, but because this one didn't show any growth, the next one is less likely to.

"We'll put it to the back of our minds until then and get on with enjoying Christmas. We're thinking of taking Megan to Lapland for Christmas."
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Sep 9, 2004
Words:462
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