Appeal launched for pioneering scanner at Royal United Hospital in Bath
A £1.2-million appeal to fund a new cancer treatment scanner at the Royal United Hospital has been launched.
The Bath Cancer Unit Support Group is behind the drive to fund a PET-CT scanner, which will enhance the treatment of certain cancers and mean patients will no longer need to be scanned at a hospital in Cheltenham.
The use of such scanners has been limited in Britain, compared to the rest of Europe, partly because of cost, and the RUH would be one of the first non-teaching hospitals in the country to offer the scans.
It already has two consultant radiologists who are qualified to interpret PET-CT scans, and a location for the scanner.
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One of these, Dr Richard Graham, said PET-CT use could have a significant effect on patients' treatment, with a third of medical regimes modified after such scans.
The scanner would also be used to plan the radiotherapy treatment, which the RUH hopes will mean more patients recover.
The appeal follows the success of a similar drive to raise money for a different sort of scanner by the Forever Friends Appeal. This has paid for a gamma CT scanner.
Dr Graham explained: "PET-CT is a similar scan but differs in the type of radioactive dye used. The major radioactive dye used in PET-CT is a type of sugar. This radioactive sugar allows cancers to be imaged in a different way to SPECT-CT. The results of this type of scan are used to make decisions about patient's treatment. Both types of scan are used in cancer care, one does not replace the other."
For more information on the PET-CT scanner, go to www.bcusg.org and download an appeal leaflet. You can also request a printed copy by contacting support group chairman John Carter via email@example.com.