Support for side-effects of radiotherapy

Cancer patients at Clatterbridge have been learning how support is available to deal with the side-effects of radiotherapy.

In the latest in a series of interviews, presenter Steve Evans has discovered help is on hand for patients after treatment ends.

Trina O'Halloran and Jeanette Oxton

Living With And Beyond Cancer is a two year project organised by The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre and Macmillan Cancer Support

Diagnostic radiographer Trina O'Halloran and colleague Jeanette Oxton have been looking particularly at the effects radiotherapy can have on the pelvic area.

While care is taken in planning treatment with the best equipment, they say it is inevitable that some surrounding tissue is affected when treating a tumour in the pelvis.

The pair came into the studio to explain how they're trying to make life easier and put different aspects of cancer care into perspective.

"We want them to live longer and better lives." – Jeanette Oxton

The Coffee Club has heard how people are living longer because cancer diagnosis and treatments have improved.

But that puts a greater emphasis on returning to life after treatment.

“We want to make sure that if the patient is finding difficulties with some of the side-effects after treatment that they have that support in place.” - Trina O'Halloran

The aim of the project is to ensure physical or emotional support in place as and when patient needs it.

The programme heard that while some non-cancerous tissue can be in the path of the radiation, it should regenerate itself over time.

Trina O'Halloran and Jeanette Oxton

It's hoped the scheme will have established good practice in local hospitals by the time it ends next year.


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