Brain-op MP debates suicide law

AN MP who suffered a life-threatening illness has spoken about his experience.

Guy Opperman talked about his brain tumour and subsequent operation during a backbench-led debate on issues surrounding assisted suicide in Parliament on Tuesday.

And the Conservative MP for Hexham, whose constituency includes Ponteland and Stannington, urged the Government to accept that in certain cases, individuals should be able to make their own life-or-death decisions.

He told MPs: “I was taken to St Thomas’s hospital, where an A and E doctor advised me that I required a craniotomy to remove the meningioma from my brain.

“That was extremely frightening. I was advised as to the likelihood of death, paralysis, loss of speech or sight, and so much more.

“It was a week before I had my operation. I was one of the lucky ones. I survived with a few scars and with no deficit whatever. However, I have to face up to the possibility that I might not have been so lucky.

“I had a week to contemplate the situation. It made me think about what might have been.

“One comes back to a simple issue which, I suggest, is at the heart of this entire debate: to whom does a person’s life belong?

“I suggest that a person’s life belongs to the individual themselves. It is for those who are not as lucky as I was to make their choices about how they live their lives.”