Trust celebrates achievements in international mesothelioma research on Action Mesothelioma Day

Iain Lawrie web
Trust celebrates achievements in international mesothelioma research on Action Mesothelioma Day
30 June 2016

As part of The British Lung Foundation’s Action Mesothelioma Day (1 July) The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust is raising awareness of the disease and its current research work. Mesothelioma is a deadly cancer caused by breathing in asbestos dust.

The Trust, which runs North Manchester General Hospital, The Royal Oldham Hospital, Fairfield General Hospital in Bury, Rochdale Infirmary and community services, is taking part in an international study looking to improve the lives of mesothelioma sufferers.

It is one of four lead centres out of a total of 21 centres around the world conducting a study examining if involving palliative care specialists early in the treatment of mesothelioma improves the quality of life and wellbeing of patients and their family or close friends.

The study, being led by Professor Chauhan at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, has been made possible through support and funding from both the British Lung Foundation and Mesothelioma UK researchers at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust.

Dr Iain Lawrie (pictured), Consultant in Palliative Medicine at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, a Principal Investigator for the study and a member of the team who designed the study, has been recruiting newly-diagnosed patients with mesothelioma to the clinical trial since late 2014, with 139 patients and 115 carers in total recruited so far across all sites.

Dr Iain Lawrie, Consultant in Palliative Medicine at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said:

“It is exciting to be involved in a new type of research in palliative care, as often such research is overlooked or deemed inappropriate. Patients with life-limiting diseases are exceptionally keen to be involved in projects that may improve care in this area.”

Patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma frequently have significant physical symptoms, with more than 90 percent of patients complaining of three or more symptoms when diagnosed.

Studies in lung cancer have shown that such symptoms interfere with activity and cause a worse quality of life, but also that regular, early Specialist Palliative Care Team involvement in addition to routine care may lead to an improved quality of life, fewer depressive symptoms and improved survival.

Action Mesothelioma Day is an annual day to raise awareness and pay tribute to all those people suffering with the mesothelioma cancer. The UK has the world’s highest incidence, with more than 2,500 people diagnosed with mesothelioma each year and this number is increasing. It is estimated that there will be 60,000 to 75,000 new cases by 2050. In contrast to many cancers, treatments are limited and the outlook for most patients remains bleak.

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that develops in the lining that covers the outer surface of some of the body's organs. It's usually linked to asbestos exposure. It mainly affects the lining of the lungs (pleural mesothelioma), although it can also affect the lining of the tummy (peritoneal mesothelioma), heart or testicles.

For more information about the trial please speak to your clinician or visit www.respect-meso.org

Pictured: Dr Iain Lawrie, Consultant in Palliative Medicine at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust