April 16, 2009
The Royal Surrey County Hospital is hosting an Oesophago-Gastric cancer awareness day on Friday 24th April, between 11am - 4pm on the High Street, Guildford, followed by an open lecture at 7pm in the Guildhall.
Oesophago-Gastric (OG) cancer occurs in the gullet and stomach. It is the third most common cause of cancer death in the UK.
Mr Shaun Preston, Consultant Oesophago-Gastric Surgeon, said:
"Mention cancer and most people will think of breast, lung, bowel, skin or cervical cancer. Rarely does oesophageal or gastric cancer make the headlines. Most cancers within this group are concentrated around where the stomach meets the gullet and patients often dismiss symptoms as other minor complaints.
"One of the main problems is that patients do not seek treatment until the cancer is at an advanced stage. As with virtually all cancers the results of treatment, if caught at an early stage, are very good. What we now need to do is increase awareness of these cancers in the hope of detecting more patients in the early stages, where the long term outlook is very favourable."
The OG cancer unit at the Royal Surrey County Hospital is a regional centre specialising in the treatment of the disease. There have been steady and significant improvements in survival over the last 20 years, with the most recent advances being made by centralising the management of these extremely complex cases in to regional centres of excellence. The Royal Surrey team are at the forefront of delivering high quality care, including the development of key hole techniques for these complex operations. Only 30 years ago 33% (1 in 3) of patients in the UK died within 30 days of an operation for gullet cancer. Now the risk during the whole in hospital stay, for all gullet and stomach cancer operations at the RSCH, is just 3% (1 in 33).
Mr Preston added:
"Friday 24th April is the first national awareness day for OG cancer and there will be events across the UK to improve public understanding of the disease. As the regional unit we feel it is essential to be part of this."
For further information please call 01483 571122 ext 6391
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