We’re identical twins so in sync we have the same conversations when apart and surgery on one cures us both

ONE woman has revealed she was diagnosed with a brain tumour after her twin sister suffered severe migraines.

Identical twins Hilary Stockton and Hayley Hinds grew up doing everything together and shared a ‘sixth sense.’


Identical twins Hilary and Hayley grew up in North Wales and have always been very in sync with each otherCredit: Focus Features
When one had ear surgery, the other was cured of their hearing problems too


When one had ear surgery, the other was cured of their hearing problems tooCredit: Focus Features
Aged 18, they began suffering headaches and it was discovered that Hilary had a brain tumour


Aged 18, they began suffering headaches and it was discovered that Hilary had a brain tumourCredit: Focus Features

As toddlers growing up in Prestatyn, North Wales, both suffered hearing issues, but after Hayley, a housewife, had surgery to remove her adenoids, Hilary’s hearing problems miraculously cleared up!

Hilary, 47, an  admin/accounts worker, says: “Mum told me that when Hayley was under anaesthetic I lay very still on my granddad’s knee and refused to move.

“After the surgery, my own hearing problems were cured as well as Hayley’s.”

Aged 18, Hayley began suffering with severe migraines. 

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Hilary was also having headaches and was later diagnosed with a brain tumour.

After Hilary’s tumour was removed, Hayley’s headaches disappeared.

Hilary, from Prestatyn, North Wales, says: “We certainly have some sort of connection between us.

“When one of us has treatment, both of us are cured.”


Growing up, nobody could tell them apart. 

They were dressed identically and were tomboys, enjoying hunting for frog spawn and tree climbing.

Hilary says: “Hayley was always louder than me, but we looked the same.

“We used to play tricks on people, pretending to be each other. 

“Once, Hayley’s boyfriend mixed us up and was chatting away to me.

“We sounded the same so we’d always rush to answer the house phone and impersonate each other to friends and boyfriends.”

Aged 18, both girls fell pregnant. Hayley’s baby was due four weeks before Hilary’s.

But at the same time, both girls began suffering from headaches.

Mum of one Hilary says: “I was getting blinding headaches and my vision was blurred.

“I went for an eye test and was referred for scans.”

Hilary was later diagnosed with a low-grade brain tumour. 

By now she was five months pregnant and was warned she might lose her baby, and also her eyesight, without urgent surgery.

The next day she had an operation at the Walton Centre in Liverpool, Merseyside, to remove the tumour.

Amazingly, once out of surgery, both Hilary and Hayley’s migraines stopped. 

And incredibly, her baby was unharmed and her daughter, Shona, was born perfectly healthy on November 16, 1993.

Hayley’s son, Jordan, was born November 1, 1993. She went on to have three more children.


And the sisters’ twinsense continued recently, with them both separately having the same conversation on the same day about a childhood photo.

Hilary says: “Recently I bumped into a friend and we got chatting about an old photo of Hayley and I at gymnastics when we were young. 

“When I called Hayley that night, she had been chatting about the exact same photo, that same day, with a different friend. It was just spooky. 

“It was so out of the blue for us both to have picked that photo on that day. 

“There is a strange connection between us and most of the time we are not even aware of it.”

The sisters have remained very close, and, inspired by Hilary, Hayley is taking on a fundraising challenge for Brain Tumour Research.

Mum of four Hayley says: “It was a very traumatic time when Hilary was ill. 

“We were warned we might lose her, and her unborn baby.

“I will always be grateful to the doctors who saved my twin.

“I couldn’t imagine life without her.”

A spokesman for Brain Tumour Research, said: “We’re grateful to Hayley.

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“Her sister’s story demonstrates how brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age yet historically just one percent of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours.

“This must change and with the support of people like Hayley, we can work towards better treatment options and eventually, a cure.”

Brain tumour signs & symptoms

HERE are five signs and symptoms of brain tumours to look out for, according to The Brain Tumour Charity.

  1. HEADACHES: These are the most common signs of a tumour, caused by a build up of pressure on the brain, and present in around half of people who go on to be diagnosed.
  2. CHANGES IN VISION: This can include blurred or double vision, abnormal eye movements or restricted field of view and can become noticeable when you read, watch TV or get up quickly.
  3. SEIZURES: Seizures or fits are the most common first sign of a brain tumour in adults, leading to diagnosis, and should be checked by a GP or A&E doctor. Brain tumour patients often suffer focal seizures where a small part of the brain can trigger unusual sensations or changes, sometimes similar to a stroke.
  4. NAUSEA AND DIZZINESS: Feeling sick or vomiting is another common sign of brain tumours, caused by pressure. Like headaches, they can be attributable to many other things.
  5. TIREDNESS: A quarter of people with brain tumours report being severely affected by fatigue. This can be a persistent feeling of being tired, weak, worn out, slow or heavy.
When Hilary's treatment ended and she was free from her brain tumour, Hayley's migraines stopped too


When Hilary’s treatment ended and she was free from her brain tumour, Hayley’s migraines stopped tooCredit: Focus Features
As kids and teenagers, Hayley and Hilary were always impersonating one another


As kids and teenagers, Hayley and Hilary were always impersonating one anotherCredit: Focus Features

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