The Pelvic Radiation Disease Association (PRDA) estimates that 100,000 people in the UK have some form of Pelvic Radiation Disease (PRD) and is raising awareness amongst therapeutic radiographers and oncologists about the condition and the resources available to help manage the symptoms and support patients.
PRD is defined as one or more ongoing symptoms that may affect people who have previously had radiotherapy for cancers of the colon, rectum, anus, prostate, testes, bladder, cervix and womb. It can cause people to experience pain, swelling, bleeding and problems such as needing frequent, urgent access to a toilet, chronic fatigue, sleep disturbance and feeling unable to live a normal life. In the worst cases, patients are unable to leave their homes as a result of unpredictable continence issues. The knock-on effect on personal relationships and finances can be life-changing.
Some symptoms pass a few weeks after radiotherapy finishes but there are patients who experience PRD three months or more after treatment, and may have ongoing problems for many years.
People who are given support to cope with PRD and receive effective treatment often say they have ‘got their life back’. PRDA publishes patient stories that show the impact of PRD on quality of life, but also how treatment and support for self-management can be very effective in reducing symptoms and improving psychological wellbeing.
- Website information, including links to clinical guidance on managing PRD
- Connecting you with professionals in your area (mainly gastroenterologists) who are willing to accept referrals for suspected PRD
- Patient speakers or representatives for educational events, patient forums and research study groups
- Email advice from our Medical Advisory Panel via firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 01372 744338.
Article Created – 08-07-2020