Early di­ag­no­sis makes dif­fer­ence to thou­sands

Gloucestershire Echo - - NEWS -

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IT is es­ti­mated one in two peo­ple will be af­fected by can­cer at some point in their life and CT scan­ners play a vi­tal role in early di­ag­no­sis and suc­cess­ful treat­ment.

Ali Wil­liams, man­ager of the Fo­cus Sup­port Team at Gloucestershire’s On­col­ogy Cen­tre, stressed just how im­por­tant the tech­nol­ogy is for pa­tients.

She said: “Di­ag­nos­ing can­cer at an early stage is so im­por­tant. When we spot can­cer early we are much more likely to be able to treat it suc­cess­fully.

“Many of our pa­tients are di­ag­nosed us­ing CT scan­ners, which are in­valu­able in giv­ing our team an ac­cu­rate pic­ture of where can­cer is lo­cated in the body and how it is re­spond­ing to treat­ment. “A CT scan can in­form our sur­gi­cal teams by show­ing how close the can­cer is to ma­jor or­gans be­fore they op­er­ate.”

Ev­ery year more than 4,000 lo­cal peo­ple are di­ag­nosed with can­cer and visit the Gloucestershire On­col­ogy Cen­tre for treat­ment. The Fo­cus team is there to sup­port and ad­vise pa­tients at ev­ery step, from a di­ag­no­sis to ad­vice dur­ing and be­yond their treat­ment.

For many of their pa­tients, the wait for a scan can be an anx­ious time. “Whether they need a scan for an ab­nor­mal lump or are wait­ing to know how they are re­spond­ing to treat­ment, many pa­tients feel con­sid­er­able stress and would like a scan done as soon as pos­si­ble,” she said. “It can be an anx­ious wait for their fam­i­lies too.

“There are also a huge num­ber of peo­ple who have scans and find out they don’t have can­cer or need treat­ment, it’s so hard for them when they are wait­ing to find out.”

She said Chel­tenham and Glouces­ter Hos­pi­tals Char­ity’s £1.2mil­lion ap­peal would make a huge im­pact for lo­cal peo­ple fight­ing can­cer.

“Around 30 per cent of the 80,000 scans taken at Chel­tenham Gen­eral and Gloucestershire Royal Hos­pi­tal each year are to iden­tify or mon­i­tor can­cer, so this ap­peal will make a huge im­pact for so many lo­cal peo­ple each year,” she said.

With a faster di­ag­no­sis we’ll be able to move peo­ple into treat­ment at the ear­li­est op­por­tu­nity, and our staff will have the best pos­si­ble in­for­ma­tion avail­able to them.

“The new scan­ners will make such a dif­fer­ence.”

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