Sarcoma UK launches its national Sarcoma Awareness Week (13-19 June 2011) to focus much needed attention on this rare and devastating form of cancer that affects 3200 people each year including children and teenagers.
During this week, Sarcoma UK supporters are organising many exciting fundraising events across the country to increase awareness and raise funds towards sarcoma research, support and information services.
Mark Fradgley, 34 from Kent, was diagnosed with cardiac and skeletal angiosarcoma in 2009, an extremely rare form of soft tissue sarcoma. Surgeons at St Thomas’ Hospital in London excised a tumour from his heart and replaced it with bovine tissue, which in turn led to the nickname ‘Bullheart’. Mark said: ìMost people die very quickly from this kind of condition; there is almost a 100 percent mortality rate, especially when combined with the chemotherapy I had to undertake to prevent the secondary cancer in my skeletal system increasing. However, I am fairly uncomfortable with the idea of leaving this mortal coil. So I made a decision that I wouldn’t.î
Eight months after surgery on his heart and only days after completing a course of chemotherapy, Mark and ëTeam Bullheartí cycled 994 miles from John OíGroats to Lands End, raising thousands for Sarcoma UK and raising awareness of Sarcoma. In June 2011, Team Bullheart tackles ëMountain Mayhemí, the largest 24 hour mountain bike race in Europe.
In response to other sarcoma patientsí needs, Sarcoma UK launches their new website (www.sarcoma.org.uk) to coincide with Sarcoma Awareness Week. The new branded website provides patients, relatives, carers and healthcare professionals with up-date information about sarcoma, and opportunities to share experiences through the charityís online support community. The website is live from 17 June 2011.