The Prostate Cancer Appeal has the following aims:
1) To provide new innovative equipment for cancer treatments
2) To further develop research through clinical trials
3) To provide patient information and support
4) To promote earlier diagnosis
Equipment: QEHB Charity has provided funding for the Cyberknife machine giving patients the opportunity to access high-tech radiotherapy trials. The Charity provides ongoing support for the Radiotherapy Department.
Research: Nick James, Professor of Clinical Oncology, is driving the appeal forward. Amongst his research portfolio he is chief investigator for the international, multi-centre STAMPEDE Trial, a study which is becoming known as the first major change in care for newly diagnosed advanced prostate cancer since 1941.
Support: For information on support groups for prostate cancer please Cathryn Worth at QEHB Charity on 0121 371 4852 or email Cathryn.Worth@uhb.nhs.uk.
Early Diagnosis: Typically men tend to approach their GPs for men’s health issues when symptoms are severe or, as in the majority of cases with prostate cancer, patients present to A & E with urine retention. At this late stage treatment for prostate cancer is difficult. Part of the Prostate Cancer Appeal is to consider a project enabling earlier diagnosis to be achieved. To enable patients’ access to medical treatment earlier there is a need to make the ‘seeking advice on men’s health and prostate issues’ less daunting, more easily accessible. Patients who receive an early diagnosis of prostate cancer have access to early curative treatments which are typically less invasive and shorter in time scale.
Project for 2018: A major current project is the “Man Van”. We know that many men with prostate cancer suffer symptoms in silence, often for many years, before presenting with their cancer. We are currently setting up an innovative outreach project whereby we will kit out a vehicle to go to workplaces as a drop in centre for men’s health issues including prostate cancer, but also other problems such as cardiovascular risk factors. We are about to start the first pilot clinics in the early 2018. The project will also build on previous highly successful music events which have served as an effective way of communicating a message about prostate cancer detection to high risk groups. This includes the Afro-Caribbean community, where there is roughly double the risk of developing prostate cancer, as well as increased risk of death once diagnosed. The increased risk of death is driven at least in part by late presentation, reducing treatment options. Better awareness can help outcomes.