APS Team raise money for pioneering breast cancer treatment TARGIT-IORT
Breast Cancer Awareness Month – APS TEAM ARE GETTING ACTIVE.
Each APS TEAM member is set to conquer 5K a day for 2 weeks by running, walking, swimming and cycling to raise money for a Breast Cancer treatment TARGIT – IORT! From Wednesday 21st October – 4th November 2020 we will be giving it our all for an incredible cause.
What’s it all about:
After watching the news one evening in the summer, I was surprisingly left with a feeling of complete warmth and amazement.
Amongst the thick haze of COVID 19 headlines, I managed to catch an interview of a Professor from UCL who was explaining a targeted radiotherapy treatment for Breast Cancer he has been working for over 20 years. This treatment which has been a long time in the making really struck a personal chord with me and has remained at the fore front of my mind for a while now.
I’m sure you’ll all agree with me – especially if any of you have had to unfortunately undergo radiotherapy or like myself have had someone close to you whom has due to breast cancer – you will understand that the commitment of those lengthy, repetitive radiotherapy sessions do not make your life any easier. That is why the work these pioneers are completing on this treatment is so fantastic!
As it is ‘Breast Cancer Awareness month’ – the APS Team ceased the opportunity to do some digging to see if there is any way we can help this team move forward with their treatment. Much to my dismay, I couldn’t find a charity which was supporting the funding of this treatment. So, I contacted the university directly.
Incredibly, I had a call from THE professor from the interview on TV – Professor Jeffrey Tobias whom is the lead on this treatment called TARGIT – IORT and has been working on Breast Cancer for the last 40 years. He explained how far treatment for Breast Cancer has progressed but not without obstacles.
What is TARGIT IORT:
TARGIT-IORT is delivered immediately after lumpectomy (tumour removal), via a small ball-shaped device placed inside the breast, directly where the cancer had been. The single-dose treatment lasts for around 20 to 30 minutes and replaces the need for extra hospital visits, benefiting both patient safety and well-being. COMPARED TO: Conventional external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) which is delivered from outside the body via a radiotherapy machine and consists of a daily treatment session to the whole breast, over a period between three to six weeks and requires 15 to 30 hospital visits, which could be a significant distance from where the patient lives.
Prof. Jeffrey Tobias explained that unfortunately they are really struggling to get this treatment into NHS hospitals, even though it is readily available abroad and privately here in the UK with amazing results in patients! There’s belief in that there is a go-slow resistance with the NHS as there is a conflict of interest – loss of income for Radiotherapy depts, since this one single diagnosis is responsible for about 30 % of the workload of a typical RT department. This is one of the main reason’s as to why the APS Team would like to raise awareness and hopefully a fair bit of money to aid this pioneering treatment.