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Brain tumour unit opens in London

Posted on: 02/21/2011

Brain tumour unit opens in London

The UK's first dedicated brain tumour unit has opened in London.

Experts in the field will treat patients from all over the country and lead research into treating brain cancer.

It is hoped more focused studies and clinical trials could lead to the kind of results seen with breast cancer and childhood leukaemia.

Survival rates for these types of the disease have improved dramatically in recent years. Survival depends on factors such as the size and place of the tumour and how advanced the cancer is at diagnosis.

About 8,500 people are diagnosed with a brain tumour each year in the UK and more than half of the tumours are malignant. Around 4,000 people die every year from the disease.

For all types of malignant brain tumours in adults, more than a third of people (36%) live for at least a year. But only about 15% live for more than five years and just under one on 10 live for more than a decade.

The new brain tumour unit has 12 inpatient beds and is based at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery (NHNN), part of University College Hospitals London NHS Foundation Trust (UCLH).

It is fitted with state-of-the-art tools, including the latest MRI scanners and radiotherapy equipment.

A Brain Tumour Bank has been established so research teams can find out more about different tumours with the hope of developing better treatments. A national database will also track the outcomes for patients across the UK to monitor the effectiveness of different therapies with the findings shared worldwide.

The National Brain Appeal charity has invested £2.5 million in the unit and its brain cancer service.


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