We are proud to announce that we will be working in collaboration with Sarcoma UK to improve the diagnosis of bone and soft tissue sarcomas.

Through this brand-new partnership, the Bone Cancer Research Trust and Sarcoma UK will each commit £250,000 to support pioneering scientific and clinical research projects which aim to improve how sarcomas are detected and diagnosed.

At the Advancing Diagnosis of Bone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas meeting, held in January 2024, over 70 representatives from the sarcoma and wider cancer diagnosis research communities came together to discuss challenges and define priorities for new research. They were also joined by people with lived experience of sarcoma.

Among the key issues identified at the meeting were:

  • Lack of defined at-risk groups
  • Variable knowledge of sarcoma symptoms among primary care professionals
  • Inefficient and non-standardised referral pathways
  • Misinterpretation of scans
  • Lack of data collection

It was also highlighted that delays to sarcoma diagnosis can mean higher risk of the cancer spreading to other parts of the body, increased risk of amputation, and huge impact on patients' mental health.

As such, research into improving the diagnosis of sarcoma is known to be a huge priority for people affected by sarcoma — second only to finding kinder, more effective treatments.

The insights and invaluable opinions put forward at the meeting helped shape this innovative funding call, which the two charities are proudly announcing today.

Dr Zoe Davison, Head of Research, Information & Support at the Bone Cancer Research Trust, shared:

We are incredibly proud to be working together with Sarcoma UK on this vital funding call, which we hope will offer fresh hope to sarcoma patients. Our patients are at the heart of everything we do, and they highlighted that research to improve the diagnosis of sarcoma as a priority, making us committed to honouring and delivering this to enable more patients to survive and thrive. Collaboration is key to making this a reality, and it is an honour to be bringing our two charities together to help give patients a better future.

Dr Sorrell Bickley, Director of Research, Policy, and Support at Sarcoma UK, added:

Research to improve sarcoma diagnosis is so badly needed. Sarcomas can affect anyone at any age, and occur anywhere in the body. People with sarcoma face a lengthy, confusing, and often frightening wait to get the correct diagnosis and we need that to change. We know that one in three sarcoma patients will wait at least six months from first presenting with symptoms. We hope that, by working together, Sarcoma UK and the Bone Cancer Research Trust can change that picture.

Ann Maxwell, cranial chondrosarcoma patient, commented:

This is a hugely insightful approach by both charities, enabling the careful crafting of a funding call for a small group of rare & much overlooked cancers. The 'live' collaboration of all concerned parties, with a focus on patient need at the heart of the process, is highly commendable. I very much look forward to learning of the eventual outcome from such a well thought out initiative.

To find out more and apply, visit the link below:

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