I was diagnosed with Bowel Cancer following an emergency presentation with a rectal haemorrhage. I had severe complications immediately post-surgery and I was not expected to survive.
I am one of the lucky ones. I am now a 20 year survivor who has beaten the odds and am very grateful indeed.
Ever since then I have tried to help other BC patients, by offering a personal ‘one to one’ support through their cancer journey. I have also worked within hospitals and for cancer research organisations
I was part of the working group ‘Learning from patient experience’ for my local NHS Hospital Trust, I was also part of the working group that revised ‘The clinical pathway for the treatment of Bowel Cancer’ for the NHS.
I have been a patient advocate / representative with Bowel Cancer Intelligence UK and currently act in a similar role for Data Can UK and CRUK Grand Challenge: Optimisticc
My mantra is to take the luck out of the diagnosis and treatment of bowel cancer, by developing better screening, improving diagnosis and treatment plans.
Over 43,000 people in the UK will be diagnosed with bowel cancer this year. There will be over 17,000 deaths attributed to the disease. Within these statistics is an alarming growing number of younger patients.
We need to increase Bowel Cancer Awareness encouraging the take up of the national screening program, and the awareness of the symptoms that are associated with the disease both by the public and our General Practitioners. We need also to address some of the societal cultural issues and stigma’s associated particularly with screening.
By our combined actions, creating awareness and getting a clear and consistent message ‘out there’, we can reduce these numbers and save the lives of our loved ones…………………….That’s why I do what I do!