In sickness and in health: MP Baey Yam Keng and his wife on battling cancer and effects of stroke

Tampines GRC MP Baey Yam Keng and his wife Lim Hai Yen leaned on each other for support after she was diagnosed with aphasia and he with nose cancer. They tell The Straits Times how they have coped with their illnesses.

MP Baey Yam Keng suspected that Ms Lim Hai Yen was having a stroke when she seemed confused and could not speak coherently. ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

Hit by aphasia: Playwright Lim Hai Yen couldn't recall husband Baey Yam Keng's name

During the circuit breaker two years ago, playwright Lim Hai Yen was celebrating her birthday with her friends on Zoom when she suddenly felt unwell.

They were discussing when to meet next, but she had difficulty getting the dates right.

Later that day, her husband, MP for Tampines GRC Baey Yam Keng, suspected that she was having a stroke when she seemed confused and could not speak coherently.

A check-up at the hospital confirmed that she was having a stroke, due to a burst blood vessel in the brain.


Coping with nose cancer: MP Baey Yam Keng lost weight, had to remove teeth

A regular eye check for glaucoma last year led Tampines GRC MP Baey Yam Keng to discover that he had nose cancer.

Mr Baey, who is also Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Transport, was found to have a small area of limited vision in his right eye and was later referred to a ear, nose and throat specialist.

A scope found a growth in his right nasal passage and a biopsy later showed that the tumour was cancerous.

While the 51-year-old was initially calm about the cancer diagnosis, he worried about how he would pull through and what his chances of survival were like if it were late-stage cancer.


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