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 MEETING

    AGM off, coffee and walk cancelled

    The next BAWA members’ meeting, our AGM on April 22, has been cancelled and will probably be rearranged for September 15 at BAWA. BAWA directions here. Chris Millett’s spring walk on April 3  at Ashton Court has been called off. A decision about the June Bristol docks walk and the July Penny Brohn lunch will be made later. If anyone needs help do not hesitate to call a committee member (phone numbers in our programme card or call our Tackle helpline number, 0800 035 5302). Or join the Prostate Cancer UK online community. Before joining, take a look around and read through the conversations. Forum questions, answers, advice, support and information are viewable whether you’re a member or not. See more or join here

    OUR coffee mornings at the Macmillan Centre, Southmead Hospital, on the first Thursday of each month have been cancelled until further notice. The Macmillan Centre has been asked to advise any new patients who turn up to contact us via this website or our Tackle helpline.

    Record deaths, but cancer killer on way?

    Deaths from prostate cancer in the UK exceeded 12,000 in 2019 for the first time ever. The deaths have exceeded those from breast cancer for the first time. But a new type of immune cell which kills most cancers has been discovered by accident by British scientists. More info here  And screening was in the news again. Margaret McCartney, a GP and author, wrote in The Guardian that “detecting PCa early has little effect on death rates and can lead to unnecessary suffering”. But then the BBC reported that a large new trial is testing whether MRI scans could be an effective way to screen for this cancer. Leading expert Prof Mark Emberton explained why finding a suitable PCa screening method is vital but has proved difficult. See the article here

     

  • Hormone treatment researched

    An online survey aiming to shed more light on the daily experience of prostate cancer patients undergoing hormonal therapy (ADT) is being conducted by Caterina Gentili, a PhD researcher from the Centre for Appearance Research (University of the West of England, Bristol). The survey takes only 10 to 20 minutes. As a thank-you, you will have the chance to enter a raffle to win a £70 online shopping voucher. If you would like to take part, please follow this link Any questions? Caterina’s details are on the link.

  • New hope for advanced cancer men

    A new treatment is being tested that could extend the lives of men with advanced prostate cancer, by killing cancer in the prostate despite the disease having spread. The nationwide Atlanta trial, at Imperial College London, is to recruit 918 men newly-diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer. Read more here.  And positive results have been reported from a clinical trial that tested the PARP-inhibitor olaparib (Lynparza) in patients with metastatic castration-resistant PCa who have alterations in certain DNA damage repair genes. Roughly 20-30% of these patients harbour these gene mutations in their tumours and thus may benefit from olaparib.

  • Killer virus attacks cancer

    A genetically modified virus that kills cancer cells and destroys their hiding places has been developed by British scientists. The dual-action virus targets both cancer cells and healthy cells which have been tricked into protecting the cancer from the immune system. The Oxford University study is the first time cancer-associated fibroblasts or CAFs within solid tumours have been specifically targeted in this way (Nov ’19). See more here. And a simple new blood test has been found to detect aggressive prostate cancer, according to research by Queen Mary University of London. With the PSA test, the new test could help men avoid unnecessary and invasive biopsies, over-diagnosis and over-treatment. The results need to be validated in other independent research centres before the new test is available, which could take 3-5 more years (Oct ’19). See more here. And UK researchers have developed a urine test to diagnose aggressive PCa and predict whether patients will need treatment up to five years earlier than standard clinical methods (Jun ’19). See more here

  • Tracking down tumours

    A radical ‘seek and destroy’ treatment could extend the lives of thousands of men with advanced prostate cancer. The approach is described by experts as ‘game changing’ (Jun ’19). See more at

  • MRI scans to replace PSA?

    Hundreds of UK men are trying out a non-invasive MRI scan for prostate cancer to see if it should eventually be offered routinely on the NHS. The scan takes images to check for any abnormal growths. It will take a few years to know if MRI will be better than PSA tests and biopsies at spotting cancers (Jun ’19). In this article, leading expert Prof Mark Emberton explains why finding a suitable screening method is vital but has proved difficult so far. And Prostate Cancer UK said the news made headlines but journalists “can be overly enthusiastic about new research” and put the record straight here. And an academic article on this suibject is to be found here

  • A first for advanced patients

    GenesisCare announced that the first UK patients have been treated with Theranostics personalised treatment for advanced prostate cancer outside a clinical trial. This is the first time this treatment has been clinically available in the UK, bringing new hope for patients with late stage prostate cancer (Jun ’19). More info here. And videos of patients who are have had the PSMA therapy and want to share their experience are available here. And there are individual patients’ experiences here
    and here

  • Drugs to attack resistant cancer

    The world’s first drugs designed to stop cancer cells becoming resistant to treatment could be available within the next decade, scientists have said. A £75m investment to develop the drugs has been announced by the Institute of Cancer Research (May ’19). See more here

  • Help with treatment – but beware

    AN NHS tool is now available – intended for men with non-metastatic prostate cancer who are deciding between conservative and radical management regimes. It is intended only for men with non-metastatic prostate cancer who are deciding between conservative and radical management regimes. It’s recommend that patients use this tool in consultation with their doctor (Apr ’19). See here. You may have read about this tool in newspapers, but not all the news was 100% accurate – check this NHS Behind The Headlines Page for the facts.. And four new technologies that will tame the immune system are getting us closer to a future where cancer becomes curable. See more here

  • Cancer can be detected much earlier

     

    The first signs of cancer can appear decades before diagnosis, scientists have found – a discovery that could revolutionise treatment (Feb ’20). See more here. And Public Health England has published a statistical bulletin on survival rates for many types of cancer based on more recent data than previously available. It stressses the importance of early diagnosis. A summary of the stats is to be found here with a link to the full report

  • A Bristol first – and sparing nerves

    A Bristol man is the first NHS patient to have a device implanted which can reduce the side effects of radiotherapy by 70%. Alan Clarke first had radiotherapy in 2011 but the cancer returned. He was chosen to be first to receive the spacer because he was considered to be more at risk of suffering side effects from a second course of radiotherapy (see more here). And a trial to spare the nerves around the prostate during surgery is being held at Southmead Hospital. if successful, it will reduce the risk of erectile disfunction and will be available throughout England. The trial featured on BBC Points West on January 23 ’19. More news on the Newsletter page.

RunningA friendly and supportive network that meets regularly at the BAWA, Filton. The  AGM was to be on April 22 but has been postponed. Our group 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.

Regional co-ordinator needed

Tackle need a Regional Co-ordinator for Western Counties. The holder acts as a focal point for communications on region-specific topics between the new chairman, Ken Mastris, and member groups in the area. In addition, he or she will participate in occasional meetings or teleconferences. All expenses are reimbursed. If any Prospect member wishes to volunteer, they can email info@tackleprostate.org

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 here

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.

 

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 and spotting fake cancer news

Ten cancer myths debunked. See here. And also here are six tips to spot cancer fake news

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 here

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. For more information on Energise see our Helpful links page.

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 here. 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 more here.

Tiger or pussycat? That’s the problem

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

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 Radiation Oncology. This created an opportunity for more precise treatment.

Back to top

  • 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