Published: September 29th, 2017 12:01am

Stretton Cancer Care 201710

Stretton and Shropshire Cancer Care: October Meeting – Monday 9th October

Janet Radford - Confide Counselling Service

Confide is a charity based in Shrewsbury and has been providing counselling services for over 30 years. They work for the NHS and also provide privately funded services. Confide has a reputation for innovation. It recently gained funding to provide services to the Armed Forces community and was also an Aviva Award winner.

Janet will tell us about the range of services Confide provides and what people receiving counselling can expect to experience. Their Shrewsbury base is in the Town Centre, and they can also offer telephone counseling.

Thank you to Rosemary and David Meddins

We enjoyed a wonderful afternoon out at Bow House Farm for our August Garden Party. The weather was not as good as we had hoped for but we gathered in Rosemary and David Meddins' garden admiring the magnificent views before adjourning to the house for tea. Thank you too to Marion and Sue for all the help with serving the tea.

Cancer News

Liquid Biopsy can predict Relapse

For a recent UK clinical trial for lung cancer (TRACER-X) the scientists developed a new way of taking a biopsy. Traditionally a lung biopsy is an unpleasant and uncomfortable procedure, although it can provide proof that cancer is present.

The new method relies on analysis of a blood sample, which can predict if a patient is likely to relapse at an early stage, eliminating the need for a traditional biopsy and enabling treatment to start earlier. The technique is likely to be applicable to other cancers too, and is being used in other studies. Although not yet generally available it is being seen as an important breakthrough in predicting relapse.

Saving Nails while having Chemo

Chemotherapy often causes visible damage to nails, known as Beau's lines. The condition can get worse with discoloration, soreness, brittleness, and partial destruction of nails. This can lead to pain, body image issues, limitations in daily living activities and, if untreated, can lead to secondary infection.

A trial of a product made from natural plant extracts, known as

polybalm, was undertaken involving 60 men and women receiving

chemotherapy. They were randomised to apply a simple moisturising cream or the natural balm to their nail beds between one and three times a day. Only two patients in the polybalm cohort had noticeable nail damage compared to more than half in the moisturiser group. Nail damage was measured with four methods and revealed a significant difference between the two groups. The trial was designed by a scientific committee of phytochemists, herbalists, patients, oncologists and nurses from Bedford and Addenbrooke's Cambridge University Hospitals, Coventry University and the Royal Hospital for

Integrative Medicine. The committee worked with the National Cancer Research Institute's lifestyle and behavioural change clinical studies group.

Polybalm is made in the UK and is not a medicinal product. It fully complies with EU Cosmetics Standards and is currently only available online.

Details from Roger Wilson