Claire Osborn, a 37-year-old mother of six, was driving when she felt a tickle in her throat--and then suddenly expectorated a "heart-shaped lump of liver-colored tissue," according to the Daily Mail.
"I knew something was very wrong so I went straight to my GP who sent the tissue sample away for tests," Osborn said.
Osborn reports that she was then taken to the hospital for tests. The attending physicians told her that she'd need a regimen of chemotherapy and surgery to treat her metastatic adenocarcinoma--an aggressive form of cancer. They also sized up her odds of survival at just 50/50.
However, when doctors ran follow-up tests on Osborn to measure how much cancer remained in her body, they couldn't find any.
"The consultant turned round to me and said, 'It appears you have coughed up your cancer. Congratulations,' " Osborn told the Daily Mail. "I was totally flabbergasted. I couldn't believe a coughing fit had saved my life."
Osborn is now recovering after a minor precautionary surgery to remove any cancer cells that might have gone undetected.
Dr. Gary Walton, the surgeon who treated Osborn, said it's rare for patients to cough up cancer--but not impossible.
"We suspect the tumor grew on a stalk at the back of her mouth which is very difficult to detect," he told the Daily Mail. "Somehow she dislodged this and the stalk snapped and she coughed up the tumor."
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