A MOTHER whose son was diagnosed with a brain tumour has welcomed a new report exposing the punishing financial burden of the disease.

Sharon Hacking, 55, from Blackburn, is speaking out after witnessing the financial impact of her son Jay’s brain tumour diagnosis.

Jay Lynchehaun was diagnosed aged 25 with a highly aggressive glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain tumour.

He underwent surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and had to give up a promising career as a mechanic.

Now, aged 32, Jay is working part time as a graphic designer and living in Clitheroe with his wife Becky and son Teddy.

She said: “Jay was on a good salary as a senior mechanic but had to give up the job he adored because he couldn’t drive any longer.

"He had great prospects so it was extremely difficult for him to go through this.

"Added to this there was the cost of constant hospital appointments, and increased household bills while he was bedbound at home.

"What’s more, he needed a complete new wardrobe because steroids caused him to gain five stone.”

The report Exposing the Financial Impact of Brain Tumours released by the Brain Tumour Research charity this week reveals the financial impact of a brain tumour diagnosis is double that for all cancers.

Patients said they suffered a loss of independence and isolation which, combined with a dramatic decline in their earning potential, brought an impact almost as distressing as the disease itself.

The report, based on the experiences of 368 people will be fed into a formal inquiry into the hidden costs of a brain tumour being led by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Brain Tumours for which Brain Tumour Research provides the secretariat.

The report found:

- an average financial loss of £14,783 per household per year – more than double the £6,840 for all cancers

- households face an annual rise in household bills of £1,000 and many also have to make expensive modifications

to their homes

- patients also have to find around £1,582 in travel costs for hospital visits

Suffer a crippling £391 increase in travel insurance making a much-needed holiday a distant dream for many.

Sue Farrington Smith, Chief Executive of Brain Tumour Research, said: “The financial penalties, the loss of independence and the consequential feelings of isolation compound the poor prognosis endured by brain tumour patients and this has got to stop.”

The charity is calling on the Government to speed up access to better treatments by stimulating further increases in the national investment for research into brain tumours, offset the debilitating loss of income by providing additional benefits and fund easily accessible financial support for patients while they are receiving treatment.