Each year around 20,000 patients are treated by radiotherapy (sometimes in combination with chemotherapy) to the pelvic region because they are diagnosed with cancer. 50% of these patients will experience long term effects many months even years after their radiotherapy treatment has finished. 20-40% of these patients suffer serious side effects causing severe medical and social problems many patients undergoing pelvic radiation therapy define their quality of life as degraded due to subsequent chronic changes to their bowel function, such as diarrhoea or fecal incontinence. These late effects are common—in some cases, even life-threatening. Frequently, they go clinically unresolved remaining untreated for years. The video outlines what pelvic radiation disease is, how it affects sufferers and what the currently can be done to alleviate symptoms.
1 CPD credit.
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Dr Ana Wilson
Consultant Gastroenterologist and Specialist Endoscopist, Trust Lead for GI Consequences of Cancer Treatment, St Mark's Hospital, London