My brother has two months to live after doctors gave him paracetamol for back pain by mistake


MANY people have aches and pains.

But when Darren Mulqueen woke up in agony 18-months-ago, he decided a trip to the GP was necessary.

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Darren Mulqueen had returned home from the army and went on his first holiday to Granada earlier this year
But he became unwell after experiencing excruciating pain, so he visited his GP. He is pictured above with his two young children

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But he became unwell after experiencing excruciating pain, so he visited his GP. He is pictured above with his two young children
Darren was told his pain was muscular and that he should take paracetamol for the pain

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Darren was told his pain was muscular and that he should take paracetamol for the pain

The 34-year-old from London was told by the doctor that the pain was muscular, and was sent away – being told to take some paracetamol.

He went back and fourth to his GP for months on end and his condition didn’t improve.

Earlier this year Darren had returned home from the army and went on his first holiday to Granada.

But once he landed back in the UK, he ended up in hospital due to the pain.

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Darren was soon given a CT scan and doctors revealed he had pancreatic cancer.

There are around 9,600 deaths from the disease every year and it’s the tenth most common cancer in the country.

From his time of diagnosis in July, doctors said Darren’s condition was terminal and that he has just two months to live.

His sister Michelle Vassell said that the whole family is in shock.

She told MyLondon: “You trust your GP and you think you have no reason to question their diagnosis; they’re the experts.

“So we never thought it would be cancer.”

The family learnt that Darren had become so ill that chemotherapy was no longer an option.

In July Darren had a second scan, where he discovered the illness had spread to his liver.

Since his diagnosis he has not left hospital and is hooked up to a morphine pump every two hours.

Sadly, the cancer has stopped Darren’s bowels working properly, so he is unable to eat much, causing him to lose weight.

The family is now struggling financially and Michelle said her brother fears he won’t have enough money to leave his two young children.

What are the signs of pancreatic cancer you need to know?

Pancreatic cancer is known as the silent killer because it’s hard to diagnose early – it does not cause any signs or symptoms at the early stages.

That’s why it’s so important to be aware of the symptoms to look for as soon as they start.

The most common symptoms to look out for include:

  • tummy pain
  • back pain
  • unexplained weight loss
  • indigestion
  • loss of appetite
  • changes to bowel habits: This includes steatorrhoea (pale, smelly stools (poo) that may float), diarrhoea (loose watery stools) or constipation (problems opening your bowels)
  • jaundice: The most common signs of jaundice are that your skin and white of your yellow. It also causes dark urine, pale stools and itchy skin
    difficulty swallowing: Some people can find it difficult to swallow food, or might cough or choke when they eat, bring food back up or feel that food is stuck in their throat
  • recently diagnosed diabetes: The pancreas produces insulin, which helps to control the amount of sugar in the blood. Cancer can stop it from working properly, meaning it might not produce enough insulin and cause diabetes
  • extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • feeling unusually full after food
  • blood clots in a vein

Before his diagnosis, he got a bike on loan but is no longer able to pay it.

“He now can’t pay his phone bill which is our main way of staying in contact with him when we’re not visiting the hospital,” she added.

Michelle said while she wants to help, she cannot as she is currently on maternity leave.

After his diagnosis, with the help of a Macmillan nurse, Darren applied for Universal Credit, but has not yet had a response.

The family are now trying to raise funds so they can give Darren the best send off possible and to potentially leave his children some money in his will.

So far the family have raised £3,040 of the £7,000 goal.

Michelle said on her last conversation with Darren, he urged people to get check if they have pain anywhere that doesn’t feel right.

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