A BETTER FUTURE FOR CANCER TREATMENT PATIENTS

The Mouth Cancer Foundation is involved in an initiative exploring the long-term burden of treatment on head and neck cancer patients, along with patient support group The Swallows and pharmaceutical company Bristol - Myers Squibb.

A survery last year revealed after undergoing treatment for head and neck cancer, which can include surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy, many patients report an ongoing impact on their day-to-day life. However, 55% of the 118 patients surveyed indicated they did not recieve the right level of information in preparation for the complications encounted from treatment. 

Following treatment, the survey showed 56% of patients had problems with simple things like swallowing, often experiencing severe pain, while two-thirds of patients experienced changes in their voice or speech. The survey also showed self-reported change from pre- to post- treatment in vital areas including a drop in the ability to communicate (37%), memory loss (21%) and trouble sleeping (20%).

We are now working together to discuss how best to implement the changes required to facilitate the best outcome for patients. Mouth Cancer Foundation Clinical Ambassador, Andrew Osafo will attend a roundtable meeting today to try to move the findings forwards. Andrew says "It is important that we raise the awareness of this and work together to provide solutions to improve and support patients outcomes" Mouth Cancer Foundation Clinical Ambassador Andrew Osafo.