We Need Your Help...
We desperately need more funding for research into an early detection test for Mesothelioma and eventually a cure.
My name is Sandie Foreman and I have Mesothelioma.
In March 2016 I went to my GP after experiencing what felt like a pinched nerve in my abdomen. He sent me for a colonoscopy and an X-ray. Everything looked normal except the X-ray had picked up the bottom of my lungs and displayed a 2cm lesion on the pleura of my left lung. He wasn’t concerned, as I have never smoked or worked in an environment that would have exposed me to any dust diseases (or so I thought) and I have always been very fit and healthy.
I had no symptoms at all, I was exercising regularly with no breathing difficulties or cough. He put the lesion down to old scar tissue from a chest infection but advised another X-ray in 3 months just to be safe. The lesion had grown to 2.2cm in 3 months and they picked up another lesion, 0.8cm in size at the top of that lung on the pleura and a couple of 1mm spots on the side and so I was referred to a respiratory specialist. He continued to reassure me that this was most likely nothing as I did not fit any of the markers for any type of lung disease. After a needle and core biopsy, much to the disbelief of the specialist, it was confirmed I had Mesothelioma…
We are very grateful to Sandie for sharing her journey with us
Sandie had an Extra Pleural Pneumonectomy or EPP which is performed on patients in the early stages of malignant pleural mesothelioma, when the cancer is confined to the chest cavity. This treatment allows for the maximum amount of cancerous tissue to be removed and can also help ease breathing and improve quality of life. Because mesothelioma is usually not diagnosed until it reaches stage 3 or 4, many patients are unfortunately not candidates for this surgery. As Sandie says, she was one of the lucky ones! Her case highlights the critical importance of early detection for Mesothelioma.
Professor Brian McCaughan and Professor Tristan Yan are the only surgeons in NSW who offer patients radical surgical treatment options for selected patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma, with long-term survivors beyond 5 and 10 years. With support from The Baird Institute, their research focus is on the early detection of mesothelioma, increasing awareness of asbestos related diseases and molecular and genetic analyses of mesothelioma. The Baird Institute published a book a few years back entitled “Diagnosis and Treatment, The Journey of a Patient with Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma”, written by Jocelyn McLean and Prof Brian McCaughan. Please don’t hesitate to contact us for a copy if it would be of interest.
As you well know, at The Baird Institute we are committed to helping ordinary people who have been diagnosed with serious heart or lung conditions that require surgery. I thank you most sincerely for your past support. Your trust in us and our work, is highly valued by every member of our team. If you can, please support us again this Christmas as we continue the journey to help others facing life threatening cardiothoracic conditions.
Your generous gift of $50, $100 or $200 will go directly towards our research – please support us today.
Thank you again and on behalf of all of us at The Baird Institute, I wish you a joyous, healthy and safe festive season.
Professor Paul Bannon MB BS, FRACS, PhD
Chair, The Baird Institute