A young mother was told that poor posture while working from home was responsible for her back pain.
But Ellie Chandler was stunned to find out it was actually a giant tumor the size of a baby’s head at the base of her spine.
The 25-year-old claimed she first developed back pain after giving birth to twins in December 2019.
She said she went to doctors several times but was told to take pain medication and buy a support pillow.
The medics thought it was simply because of her bad posture from sitting at her desk at home.
The former loan officer went to an orthopedist and had a clear x-ray until her gynecologist felt the huge mass inside her weeks later.
After emergency testing, the mother-of-two was diagnosed with a rare 5.5-inch giant cell tumor at the base of her spine that had grown so rapidly she required a catheter.
She now faces months of intensive treatment with monthly injections to shrink the tumor, hoping to undergo risky surgery to eventually remove it.
Mum Ellie Chandler, 25, was told her back pain was due to poor posture. Kennedy News and Media
Ellie, from Pennsylvania, said: “When I went for the pelvic exam, she went to the exam and said she couldn’t do it because she felt something in it.
“She did a rectal exam and said she can feel it there too, it was quite a big mass.
“I then went to the ultrasound the same day, the CT the next day and they found the tumor.
It turned out that Chandler had a spinal tumor. Kennedy News and Media
“The pain was so bad at this point that I couldn’t sleep, couldn’t sit up, drove to work and some days cried in the car because of the pain.
“From then on I was hospitalized for about a week where they did a biopsy. It came back as a giant cell tumor, which isn’t cancerous.
“Because of my position, in my tailbone and lower spine, there is so much space that it can become massive before you start experiencing symptoms.
“Giant cell tumors are quite common in young people in their 20s, 30s and 40s.
“Doctors don’t necessarily think it’s going to be a tumor because you’re young and healthy, they think of other things first.
Chandler said the tumor was the size of a “baby’s head” when doctors discovered it. Kennedy News and Media
“All of that helped make it so massive. When they found him, he was the size of a baby’s head. The measurements were all between 10cm and 14cm when they found it.”
Ellie, who is now unable to work due to her condition, is extremely frustrated that professionals missed the tumor so early.
She warns young people that back pain is “really not normal” and hopes her story will help people find answers.
Ellie said: “I really went through the different stages of grief and am still going through it. I was really angry and scared at first.
“After that I was really angry that I went to so many different doctors and that nobody noticed.
“I have addressed red flag symptoms. Back pain shouldn’t really be considered normal for young people, but it generally is.
Chandler says she is unable to work due to complications from the tumor. Kennedy News and Media
“When I brought up neurological symptoms such as bowel and bladder issues, they should have given warning signs to the orthopedist I was seeing.
“I was definitely angry when I realized I was seeing so many doctors and no one noticed because over that span of weeks the tumor grew so much that I had trouble going to the bathroom at times.
“Back pain is so normal, especially for people who work from home these days, but it’s really not normal and you should take it seriously if it’s affecting your daily life.
“Young people in particular should not put off seeing a doctor. Don’t let it get to the point where it’s so bad that you have trouble functioning.
“Watch out for warning symptoms. So if you have symptoms other than back pain, these could be signs that you have a tumor in your spine.”
This story originally appeared on The Sun and is reproduced here with permission.