Welcome to Prospect - a support group for prostate cancer patients, their wives, partners and carers.
Prospect is run by prostate cancer survivors for the benefit of the communities in Bristol and surrounding districts

  • Next members’ meeting

    The next members’ meeting will be on September 25 at BAWA (7pm). Directions on right. At the AGM, a good financial state was reported and the officers/committee were re-elected. An interesting talk was given by Ros Fry of Cancer Research UK and she mentioned how to get a free will service.

    Coffee mornings held at the Macmillan Centre, Southmead Hospital, on the first Thursday of each month (10am-12.30), to help new patients. To help out, contact our chairman.

  • NEW: MRI scandal – and spit test trial

    Half of men are being denied access to the life-saving advanced MRI scan technique to spot prostate cancer, a Prostate Cancer UK investigation has found. Freedom of information requests to hospitals and health boards found that only 51 per cent of men have access to the scans. The responses also uncovered evidence of discrimination against older men. Prostate Cancer UK said the situation was ‘appalling’ (Jun ’18). See. And a “very significant” spit test to detect men at increased risk of prostate cancer has started trials with 300 men taking part in London. Developing better diagnostic tests is a research priority. The trial will be expanded to 5,000 men next year (Jun ’18). See

  • NEW: ‘Spectacular’ breakthrough

    Drugs that boost the immune system have saved the lives of some terminal prostate cancer patients, say UK doctors. The team at the Institute of Cancer Research and London’s Royal Marsden Hospital said the results of a trial were “spectacular” and a “big deal”. But the therapy will not work for most patients. Cancer Research UK said the next step was to predict who would respond. See (Jun ’18). And the NHS is preparing to fast-track a “game-changing” cancer treatment, its chief executive has said, calling for the makers to make it affordable. Simon Stevens said CAR-T therapy, licensed in the US, could be approved for use in the UK this year. The expensive treatments work by genetically engineering the immune system’s killer T-cells to recognise and destroy cancer cells. The US cost is far in excess of the normal NHS ceiling of £50,000 for a lifesaving drug (Apr ’18). See. And a highly accurate and reliable technique for diagnosing prostate cancer is reported by a Dundee University-based team. See. Also a groundbreaking study has uncovered why some cancers are more deadly than others, despite appearing identical (Apr ’18). See

  • Abiraterone men sought

    You might be able to help the Institute of Cancer Research if you have had abiraterone. They need patients who are willing to share their story to demonstrate the impact of cancer research, also to raise awareness of the advances their researchers are making (May ’18). See

  • Prostate cancer research at Bath

    Girls Talk Science: Learn about how prostate cancer forms, how it is diagnosed, and how Bath University researchers are working to improve its diagnosis and treatment. Download the 33-minute podcast on iTunes here or  listen on SoundCloud here. It would be helpful for them to know what you thought. Fill in this short survey here once you’ve heard the podcast and please take a look at an infographic to supplement the science here.

  • Protection from radiation

    SpaceOAR Hydroge has introduced an absorbable hydrogel that temporarily creates space between the prostate and the rectum, protecting the rectum during prostate radiation therapy (May ’18). See

  • £75m research boost – and a new tool

    The Government announced an extra £75m to boost early diagnosis and survival rates for prostate cancer, with 40,000 recruited in a new programme (Apr ’18) – see. The Daily Mail, which is campaigning for urgent improvement to prostate cancer treatments, reported that thousands of patients could be spared surgery as experts have created a tool that calculates their risk of dying from the disease with 90 percent accuracy. See

  • Deaths rise but revolution in treatment

    The number of UK deaths from prostate cancer has overtaken women’s breast cancer ones for the first time. The latest 2015 figures show there were 11,819 prostate deaths and 11,442 from breast cancer (Feb ’18). See. But the NHS has launched a one-stop service  in 10 locations to revolutionise cancer treatment. There are none in the South West yet – see

  • Southmead has new robot

    Southmead Hospital has a new £750,000 surgical robot bought by its charity. Kendleshire Golf Club seniors raised £3,366 for Prospect –  thanks.

  • Modified surgical technique

    A new technique allows surgeons to approach the prostate removal from under the bladder rather than above, possibly reducing the risk of incontinence. It’s available privately and at certain hospitals on the NHS – including Southmead – if a man requests it. Some payment is involved. See.

  • New blood test

    A blood test that could one day be used to identify cancers that are resistant to abiraterone and enzalutamide has been developed by researchers funded by Prostate Cancer UK with support from the Movember Foundation (May ’17). See.  More news on the newsletter page

Running

A friendly and supportive network that aims to:

We have found that knowledge is of great benefit to the patient. It enables him to play an active part in the decision-making process, for example in selecting the best treatment.

We offer a friendly welcome – join us

Are you just diagnosed, or do you suspect that you may have prostate cancer? Then for friendly peer support and an introduction to Prospect email prospect.bristol@gmail.com or call the Tackle helpline, which will put you in touch with us: 0800 035 5302. You can join us for a small subscription by filling in the PDF membership form on the Contact/Join us page.

This site has been compiled by prostate cancer survivors. We do not claim to have specialist knowledge other than that gained by prostate cancer patients during their treatment.

Protected from despair…

George Monbiot writes in the Guardian that the principles that define a good life protect him from despair, despite a diagnosis of prostate cancer and the ‘grisly’ operation he faces (Mar ’18). See

We give illustrated talks

Our Mike Broxton gives prostate cancer awareness talks to interested groups, including those with learning disabilities. To arrange a talk, contact prospect.bristol@gmail.com or 0800 035 5302.

Phone volunteers needed

Prostate Cancer UK needs more telephone support volunteers. This  service is provided by trained volunteers who support men affected by prostate cancer and their loved ones, by sharing their experiences of treatments. Apply at.

Having the conversation…

“Manversation” is a campaign to encourage men to speak about prostate cancer, particularly the advanced prostate form. Tackle have collaborated with Orchid, the male cancer charity, and put their name to a video and supporting material on the Manversation website.

Myths debunked

Ten cancer myths debunked. See

New information for at-risk black men

One in four black men will get prostate cancer – double the overall risk faced by all UK men. Are you are risk? See

Energise wins award

The exercise-based cancer rehab programme Energise won the Together We Achieve award for 2016. The award, announced at the inaugural Health & Care Awards in March ’17, recognises teams working together to deliver improved patient care and public health. See a video about their work here. The classes are designed for people who have been affected by cancer and whose quality of life can be maintained or improved by taking part in regular, supervised exercise with cancer specialist instructors. Energise is a partnership between Macmillan, North Bristol NHS Trust, Sports Leisure Management Ltd and Bristol City Council. In a Bristol Post article on the Easton scheme participants tell how it helped them improve mood, vitality and well-being, and to overcome cancer-related fatigue. For more information on Energise see our Helpful links page.

Regional co-ordinator needed

Tackle need a Regional Co-ordinator for Western Counties to replace Sandy Tyndale-Biscoe of Cornwall. The holder acts as a focal point for communications on region-specific topics between the chairman, Roger Wotton, and member groups in the area. See. In addition, he or she will participate in occasional meetings or teleconferences. If any Prospect member would like to volunteer for this rewarding role, they can email roger.wotton@tackleprostate.org All expenses are reimbursed.

New research strategy launched

Prostate Cancer UK has launched an ambitious 10-year strategy setting out how it will invest in the most innovative research to create a step change in our knowledge of prostate cancer. See. And we have more research news here.

Swedish test shows promise

Swedish researchers found a test which is a potentially a game-changing step forward for prostate cancer risk assessment. It involved genetic and protein biomarkers (the S3M) and was much better than PSA alone at detecting potentially dangerous prostate cancers. The Swedish results give compelling evidence the S3M risk assessment model can dramatically cut the number of unnecessary biopsies, without compromising patients’ safety. But Prostate Cancer UK says it’s going to be important to validate this study in a more diverse population before it can accept that it will work elsewhere. It is funding more research to develop a new UK risk assessment tool. These plans are still going full steam ahead, and PCa UK expects to have more to say about this later. See.

Tiger or pussycat? That’s the problem

It’s a big problem to tell the difference between slow-growing cancers and aggressive ones. See. But new research from one of Prostate Cancer UK’s Centres of Excellence could help identify which is which (Oct ’17). See.

Cancer ‘as unique as fingerprints’

Each person’s cancer is as unique as their fingerprints, said Professor Gillies McKenna, Director of the CRUK/MCR Oxford Institute for Radioation Oncology. This created an opportunity for more precise treatment – see

  • Know your risk

    Prostate Cancer UK has a new infographic and booklets.

    Exchange information

    www.myprostate.eu is now also available in English and prostate cancer patients can exchange information and help each other with treatment decisions.

  • Help with treatment choices

    Get enhanced guidance on treatment options, thanks to a checklist developed by researchers (Jun ’17). See. More help here. And why it’s difficult to choose among treatment options (Jul ’17). See. Men with early stage prostate cancer wishing to preserve sexual function while on treatment do not always make the right choices. See

  • Buddies offer home support

    This Macmillan service offers support for adult cancer patients in their homes in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire for up to 12 weeks.

    Ring 07543 248714 or email bristolbuddies@macmillan.org.uk