Lisa Norris, 15, received 17 overdoses of radiation therapy at the Beatson Oncology Centre in Glasgow during treatment for a brain tumor. The Ayrshire teenager is now being treated in a hyperbaric chamber at Ninewells Hospital, Dundee. The doctor Prof Philip James caring for a teenager said that she was improving after receiving specialist oxygen treatment.
She has suffered burns on the back of her neck and head, making her unable to lie on her back to sleep. But after four days of continuous treatment Lisa could now lie on her back again. Lisa was previously warned by the medics that exposure to the radiation could cause long-term brain damage, thereby resulting in paralysis and even premature death.
The professor said that the damage to skin and blood cells was a common side effect of radiation treatment. When the blood vessels are damaged, it becomes difficult for oxygen to be transported around the body. Hence the healing slows down at the damaged areas.
Lisa has to receive her daily treatment at the hospital in a pressurized chamber for 14 days. This treatment though a simple one will be very distressing for the patient.
Prof James also said that the treatment may prevent the possibility of future brain damage. This treatment was very useful against certain deteriorating eye conditions. But this has certain constrains and cannot be guaranteed. He has also requested the Scottish Health Minister Andy Kerr to increase the flow of funds thereby the service can be provided to every one.