Devon's prostate cancer sufferers sought for national survey

DEVON men receiving hormone therapy as treatment for prostate cancer, and their partners, are being urged to add their voices to a national survey.

DEVON men receiving hormone therapy as treatment for prostate cancer, and their partners, are being urged to add their voices to a national survey.

The Prostate Cancer Charity is calling on men and women across the county to share their views on the treatment by filling out a short questionnaire, to enable it to better understand how hormone therapy has affected the quality of life and relationships of men and their partners.

The survey will also seek to determine if men had access to the support and information they needed while on hormone therapy, which can cause side effects, including fatigue, hot flushes, weight gain and loss of sex drive.

Anna Jewell, Prostate Cancer Charity spokeswoman, said: "We want to find out whether men are receiving appropriate information before they begin the treatment so that they are prepared for the side effects, as well as whether they receive appropriate support whilst undergoing treatment.

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"We will use the findings to inform the development of our policy work around hormone therapy."

The 50-question survey, which takes between 20 and 30 minutes to complete, is available in one form for men who have received hormone therapy and in another form for the partners of men who have received the treatment. It is available to download from or can be obtained as a hard copy by calling 020 8222 7637.

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The survey is the first major information-gathering exercise as part of the charity's new prostate cancer voices initiative, which aims to recruit a network of people affected by prostate cancer, including men, their partners, families and carers, to share their knowledge and experiences.

Their views will help The Prostate Cancer Charity shape the development of the charity's support services.

It will also add their voice to its campaigning for improved prostate cancer care.

Prostate Cancer Voices will invite participants to respond to surveys, such as this one for hormone therapy, to take part in focus groups, to comment online about current issues facing those living with the disease and to represent people affected by prostate cancer on the charity's key advisory and decision-making groups.

"Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the UK. 35,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year in the UK and 10,000 men die from the disease. It is essential that we address their needs effectively.

People affected by prostate cancer are experts in what it is like to live with the disease.

Hearing their views is really important to us as it enables us to direct our resources effectively to meet current need, as well as to address any gaps in service provision. I hope as many people as possible will respond, the charity's spokeswoman added."

The closing date for the survey is 31st January 2009.

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