Diet and Physical Activity to Prevent Recurrence of High Risk Adenomas: a feasibility study
Colorectal cancer (cancer of the large bowel) is the third most common cancer and second most common cause of cancer death in the UK. One of the aims of the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme is to detect early stage colorectal cancer and adenoma (pre-cancer) and thus improve survival. Most colorectal cancers arise from polyps or adenomas, and high-risk adenomas are the most likely to become cancerous. The recurrence rate for high-risk adenomas is approximately 40% after three years. The World Cancer Research Fund report in 2007 concluded there was convincing evidence that high dietary levels of red and processed meat and low levels of physical activity cause colorectal cancer.
This study has been funded by the National Institute for Health Research, Research for Patient Benefit. The aim is to demonstrate the feasibility of altering the behaviour of patients recently diagnosed with high-risk adenoma by
(i) reducing their consumption of red meat and processed meat and
(ii) increasing their physical activity.
This study includes qualitative research to assess patients’ preferences for interventions to encourage these changes. After the qualitative work, we will design and conduct a pilot RCT.
Macmillan Herbal Medicine Study
Despite known interactions with conventional cancer treatments and contraindications for some herbal remedies with specific cancers, reliable information resources for patients are limited. This user-led study into the use of herbal medicines by cancer patients was intended to inform the future development of information resources for cancer patients, survivors and healthcare professionals regarding the use of herbal medications.
The study, funded by Macmillan Cancer Support since November 2008, was led by Christine Gratus, a member of the National Cancer Research Network Consumer Liaison Group and Honorary Senior Research Fellow, University of Birmingham. It comprised three phases: a systematic review of the literature on self-medication with herbal medicines among UK populations living with cancer; a questionnaire survey designed to establish the prevalence of herbal medicine use by cancer patients, and a qualitative study incorporating focus groups with cancer patients who had used herbal medicines since their diagnosis.