To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Woman diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer at 22 reveals the silent symptom to look out for

Woman diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer at 22 reveals the silent symptom to look out for

Mariena Browning was diagnosed with skin cancer at 22, but one common symptom was not present

A woman diagnosed with stage 4 cancer at the age of 22 has revealed an unusual symptom to look out for.

Mariena Browning from Pocatello, Idaho, in the US revealed that she was diagnosed with melanoma, a form of skin cancer, despite not displaying typical symptoms.

In the vast majority of cases a sign of melanoma is noticing that a new mole has appeared on your skin, or an existing one has suddenly changed.

But in Mariena's case this symptom did not show up, which is rare in cases of melanoma but does sometimes happen.

Not only that, but Mariena was not someone who would necessarily be considered at high risk of developing the health condition.

Risk factors can include things like family history, as well as lifestyle factors such as smoking, not wearing sun scream, and using tanning beds.

Unfortunately, due to not displaying the usual symptoms associated with the condition, medics only diagnosed Mariena when they found another symptom.

Mariena shared her story. (Instagram / marienabrowning)
Mariena shared her story. (Instagram / marienabrowning)

This was a lump on her groin which they found to be malignant.

Unfortunately because her condition was skin cancer, this meant that she was initially diagnosed with stage 3 cancer indicating that it had begun to spread.

While skin cancer is often treatable if caught early enough, unfortunately because it wasn't displaying the most common symptoms in Mariena's case this led to a series of gruelling treatments.

Sharing her experience, Mariena urged people to take basic steps to ensure that if the worst does happen they can at least catch it early.

She told Self magazine: "Now that I know how crappy and intense melanoma and its treatment can be, I’m a huge advocate for sun safety, sunscreen use and yearly skin checks with a dermatologist, even though mine didn't show up in the more traditional way."

Mariena posted about her experience with cancer. (Instagram / marienabrowning)
Mariena posted about her experience with cancer. (Instagram / marienabrowning)

Unfortunately, Mariena ended up being diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, with eight in ten patients at stage four dying within five years.

She had to endure several unpleasant treatments, with side effects including 'a scary bout of liver problems that turned my eyes yellow due to jaundice', along with 'a steroid treatment that made me super angry (and hungry)'.

She also had to endure a 'claustrophobic' course of radiation therapy after the cancer spread to her brain.

Now, it's now been six years since her initial diagnosis however, and happily Mariena has made a fantastic recovery, stopping treatment altogether in 2021.

She has moved into a new chapter of life after becoming a mom.

In an Instagram post in 2021 about her journey, she wrote: "I’d still love more than anything to spread Melanoma Awareness and help women know that even though sometimes your world gets flipped upside down it’s still possible to find the happy and as my grandpa always says 'keep smilin' even when it feels like life isn’t fair or you’re so far behind everyone else."

Featured Image Credit: Instagram/@marienabrowning

Topics: News, US News, Health, Cancer