Byron was 18 when he received his testicular cancer diagnosis. He was supported through the emotional impact of his cancer journey by CLIC Sargent.
Byron was 18 when he started experiencing a pain in his side. He thought he had over-indulged while on holiday with his friends. However the pain continued to get worse and he returned to doctors, who had originally believed it was a muscular complaint.
He said: "I had a scan and they told me that it was testicular cancer which had spread up to my lungs. It was a massive shock because the thought that it might have been cancer didn’t even pass through my mind.
"I just didn’t think about cancer affecting young people at all.
"I was referred to Addenbrooke Hospital that evening and I was put on treatment pretty much immediately. Within the space of two days I was on chemotherapy. I did a sperm donation for IVF and then I was on chemo for six months, before surgery to remove the tumour from the abdomen.
"The whole thing is difficult to process at that age. It put a strain on friendships as people really struggled to truly understand things. They just can’t relate to it – it’s too alien an experience.
CLIC Sargent helped me cope with the emotional impact of it all. You have to be ready to talk, but they were there when I needed them.
"CLIC Sargent helped me cope with the emotional impact of it all. You have to be ready to talk, but they were there when I needed them.
"They also pointed me to all the other support that I could get and it really made a difference. Now I enjoy talking about my experiences. I like to show people the human side of cancer, especially from the perspective of a young person."