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TV3 Doctor show saved my life, says mum


Brigid Broekhoven with her dog Poppy. 23/10/2014

Brigid Broekhoven with her dog Poppy. 23/10/2014

Brigid Broekhoven with her dog Poppy. 23/10/2014

A cancer survivor has credited a television show with saving her life after it helped her find a growth on one of her kidneys.

The Dublin mother was starring in a reality series with her daughter.

During the show a team of medical professionals assessed a different household each week to identify health risks before following them as they try to change their lifestyle.

Brigid Broekhoven (50), from Blackrock, originally signed up for TV3's Doctor in the House because she was afraid that she was at risk of heart disease.

"My dad died in 1982 of a heart attack at 50 and as I was approaching that I was aware of the risk [of heart disease]," said Brigid.

"I saw an ad asking if people would be interested in doing the show and I thought that it would be a great opportunity to get a screening done."

However, when under going medical tests for the show the doctors found she had a growth on one of her kidneys.

"I am a recovered alcoholic and have been off of the drink for 12 years. Depending what the family's vice was or is, the show tends to focus on those areas, so in my case they tended to focus on areas such as my liver and my kidneys and that is how it was discovered," said Brigid.

"It was a little bit surreal in a way because you ask if this is being made up. Being told that there is a potentially cancerous growth on your kidney and it would have to be removed," she added.

Brigid said that the find came as a huge surprise as she had not experienced any discomfort or symptoms to show that all was not well.

She said that the fact the show helped to intervene so early helped to save her.

"I would not have had any reason to and unfortunately unless I am very unwell I don't go to the doctor.

"Thankfully it was contained but if it grew on to the other organs then it would have been serious stuff," she told the Herald.

Now, Brigid said that she and her daughter Lizzy are living healthier lives because of the show.

"Lizzy might have the odd Chinese or something but you cannot go through something like that without changing your lifestyle," said Brigid.