Professor creates a tool to help diagnose certain cancers early

Professor Peter Brennan. Picture: Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.
Professor Peter Brennan. Picture: Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.

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  • Surgeon given £30,000 fund on appointment as president of British Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  • Chose to develop tool to help GPs detect head and neck cancer
  • Will be shared with 10,000 GP practices
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A CONSULTANT has been awarded funding to create a tool which could prove a lifesaver by detecting cancer and other problems in the head and neck.

Professor Peter Brennan from Portsmouth has been appointed as the 2016 president of the British Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. He has been given a £30,000 president fund, and has chosen to use the cash to benefit not only patients in Portsmouth, but around the country.

It can be very hard for non-specialists to detect and diagnose problems, including cancer, in the head and neck. I know that a tool like this will be really beneficial for doctors

Professor Peter Brennan

He is writing a book and online tool which will be sent to every GP practice in England.

It will assist GPs in spotting warning signs and symptoms of head and neck cancer and other tumour issues that could be fatal.

Prof Brennan, a consultant oral and maxillofacial surgeon at Portsmouth Hospitals Trust, explained: ‘It can be very hard for non-specialists to detect and diagnose problems, including cancer, in the head and neck. I know that a tool like this will be really beneficial for doctors.

‘I’m delighted to have been elected as president of the surgical association for next year, and I thought long and hard about what to use the grant for.

‘It is designed to be used for the advancement of a speciality, and I wanted to use the money in a way which would have the biggest impact on patients.

‘I’m confident that this will make a real difference, and am looking forward to seeing it being rolled out across the country.’

The scheme has the approval of the Royal College of General Practitioners, the professional body for family doctors in the UK.

Professor Brennan added: ‘The feedback that I had from RCGP is that they love the idea, and are delighted to get involved and endorse it. It’s a very exciting time.’

The book and e-learning tool will be shared with the more than 10,000 GP practices around the country.

It is hoped that they will be sent out early next year.