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Weekly Edition - Published  8 February 2015


Local News Report - Mobile Page

Preston man says patients are getting a raw deal with prostate cancer treatment

TO mark World Cancer Day, a patient who has recently undergone treatment for prostate cancer has claimed the NHS is giving men in the UK a raw deal. Lloyd Bantleman has founded the website to stop men suffering the stress and trauma when trying to find the right course of treatment for prostate cancer that he did.

Lloyd, who lives in Preston, was diagnosed with prostate cancer in November 2014 and spent 5 months going from his GP to various hospitals for scans and biopsies to be eventually told by the lead consultant that his best option was surgery to remove the prostate and then'get on with his life'. When Lloyd researched the side effects of surgery and radiotherapy, he found that there was around 50% chance of major bladder and bowel problems afterwards.

Lloyd came across the Proton Therapy Center as he had heard the story about Ashya King, the young boy whose parents took him over to Prague for treatment against UK doctors' advice. Within 2 weeks of finding the website, he had visited the center where he was given impartial information and advice about all the options available to him, including Proton Beam Therapy. Lloyd was impressed by the high success rate of the Proton Therapy Center and the fact that there was only a very minor risk of suffering side effects afterwards from this form of radiotherapy. Lloyd spent three weeks in Prague undergoing five factions of treatment and was back to work a week after returning home, with no side effects.

Lloyd Bantleman said:- "At no point did the NHS tell me about the option of Proton Beam Therapy; because it's not currently available for prostate cancer in the UK. It seems so wrong that particularly British men get a raw deal when it comes to receiving 21st century cancer treatment. Even the new proton centres being planned to open in the UK in 2017 will not treat this very common male cancer."

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men. Over 42,000 men are diagnosed every year in the UK and there are around 10,500 deaths occur from it. 1 in 8 men will get prostate cancer at some point in their lifetime. And for males of black African or Caribbean descent, the risks are even higher with 1 in 4 men at risk of developing the disease.

Lloyd continues:- "The best part is that I've had no side effects, just as the doctors at the center in Prague explained to me, the risks are very low. When I returned home I was determined to do something to make it easier for other patients to access the right information, particularly men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer. I created the website, which gives independent, impartial information on cancer treatments and signposts patients to relevant sources of more information. My reason for setting up this non-profit making website is so that men and women have access to all the information relating to their type of cancer, to be able to make an informed judgement. If this helps just one person to reduce the stress and anxiety caused when seeking treatment for cancer, then I've achieved what I set out to do."

UK-trained Professor Hiten Patel said:- "Men with prostate cancer now have a new option with proton therapy; an option that offers a high success rate as well as a low risk of side effects; and therefore a greater chance of preserving full quality of life after the conclusion of treatment."

Lloyd is now aiming to raise awareness amongst GPs and other medical professionals in the UK about Proton Beam Therapy as well as letting patients in the UK know about the wider options available to them. For more information, visit the website.


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