LONDON, March 3, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- A large US study published today shows that there is a strong correlation between delay in accessing radiotherapy for breast cancer and the incidence of local recurrence. A steady rise in recurrence developed when the time from surgery to radiotherapy exceeded 8 weeks.

Professor Karol Sikora, Medical Director of CancerPartnersUK said:

Oncologists have believed for some time that prompt access to radiotherapy for breast cancer is important. This study demonstrates the importance of timely intervention if the best results are to be obtained. It also underpins the urgent need to implement the 31 day waiting target in the NHS.

Unfortunately the lack of machine capacity and trained staff in many parts of the country means that it simply may not be possible. Increasing our investment in radiotherapy is vital if we are to climb up the European survival league for several common cancers.

New ways of working, better IT systems, developments in technology and more trained staff are the key to giving our patients the best results possible.

Further BMJ editorial comment:


CancerPartnersUK is an independent organisation set up by a group of cancer experts to improve the overall quality and availability of cancer services across the UK, particularly in radiotherapy. The organization works with hospitals and healthcare companies to set up improved cancer care facilities, through a combination of new technologies, highly qualified medical teams and expert knowledge of cancer care pathways.

SOURCE: CancerPartnersUK

CONTACT: Contacts: Karol Sikora - +44(0)7901-556453; Lyn Wallace (PR) -+44(0)7734-101024 /