Cancer widow urges involvement in clinical trials
Sue Duncomb’s husband, Philip, passed away on Christmas Day 2009 of prostate cancer. If he had not been a participant in a NHS prostate cancer drug trial, however, his wife believes that day would have come 10 months earlier.
An extended quality of life due to clinical studies
Mr Duncomb had reached the end of the line after going through all the legal medical treatments that were available to him. The end was in sight, and his quality of life was all but diminished when he was offered an opportunity to take part in a clinical study.
After being diagnosed at the age of 52, Mr Duncomb had a tumour removed in 2005 at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford. Twelve months later, the cancer was spreading. The general NHS cancer treatments available had been exhausted and chemotherapy had no more positive effects by 2008. As a last resort, Abiraterone was administered during an NHS trial. It is this prostate cancer drug that restored his quality of life and extended it by 10 months. During that time, the couple managed to visit both South Africa and Greece before Philip passed away.
The impact of taking part in clinical studies
Not only did it give an extension to Philip’s life, it also improved his quality of life during that period. There was also a sense of pride in contributing to giving other men and their families the same kind of benefits. Patient recruitment services are eager to find interested parties who want to make the same contribution.
Parties interested in taking part in medical trials can make contact with companies such as http://www.richmondpharmacology.com/patient-recruitment.php. The NHS also encourages patients and healthy individuals to take part by asking them if they want to participate in this kind of research. Patients can ask their doctor to provide information or go to http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Clinical-trials/Pages/Introduction.aspx to find out what it entails.
Participation contributes to the improvement of care. Most available treatments today have gone through the clinical trial phase. Without those participants, care would not be what it is today. In addition to contributing to research in general and doing one’s share for the global care of cancer patients, there is a chance that the individual participant could greatly benefit from the treatment, as was the case was with Philip Duncomb.