COVID diagnosis helps save Louisville woman’s life after doctors discover brain tumor

Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 5:04 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A Louisville woman’s COVID diagnosis may have saved her life.

Linda Bowden, 53, came down with COVID-19 last summer. She was sick for about two weeks. Shortly after, she noticed it hurt to breathe.

“I had a pain in the right side of my back,” Bowden said.

Bowden went to the ER and found out it was pulmonary embolisms, blood clots in her right lung caused by COVID. 

A few weeks later, she passed out and went back to the hospital where they did an MRI on her head. She and her doctors were shocked at what they found.

A brain tumor the size of a lemon growing behind her eye.

“It makes me emotional because I didn’t know if I would live through this,” Bowden said.

Her diagnosis was surprising because she hadn’t been experiencing symptoms that made her think she had a brain tumor.

“Her tumor was large, pushing on the language and memory areas of the brain; it was significantly pushing on the eye nerve,” Dr. David Sun, neurosurgeon with Norton Neuroscience Institute said.

Sun knew it had to come out.

He removed the tumor in June 2021 and was able to get about 99 percent of it out. Luckily, the tumor wasn’t cancerous.

The original COVID diagnosis in many ways saved her life. Sun even said her COVID diagnosis was a blessing in disguise.

“It lead to the discovery of this [tumor,] which I don’t think I would have known until something very serious did happen,” Bowden said.

Bowden takes her family and faith seriously, saying sometimes something good can come from something bad.

“I’m grateful to be alive and very thankful to experiencing more joys in life,” Bowden said.

Bowden will continue to see doctors so that hopefully the tumor doesn’t return.

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