A RESEARCH study sponsored by South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust, which could lead to improved diagnosis of bowel cancer, has scooped an award.
About 1,800 patients were recruited for the study to find out if using special technology, Narrow Band Imaging (NBI), during a colonoscopy (camera test) may be able to help doctors and nurses decide whether polyps – growths on the bowel wall – are potentially pre-cancerous as accurately as examination in the laboratory.
The findings are being awaited worldwide as this is the first, large-scale study of its kind.
Professor Colin Rees, of South Tyneside District Hospital in South Shields, who led the study, said: “If NBI is found to be as accurate, it will allow us to provide results to patients regarding the nature of polyps immediately, rather than having to wait for laboratory tests. It would also mean that polyps that are unlikely to become cancerous will not need to be removed, meaning less risk for patients.”
The patients involved were from a range of regional trusts, including the borough’s.
The trial was judged the winner in the Chief Investigator/Study Team of the Year category by the National Institute for Health Research North East and North Cumbria Clinical Research Network.
Professor Rees said: “We are delighted with this award, which recognises the commitment of the study team and the excellence of the collaborative working. We are particularly grateful to all patients who are prepared to participate in studies: research is a very important way to improve patient care and we couldn’t do that without patient involvement in research.”