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Last Updated: Monday, 30 July 2007, 23:50 GMT 00:50 UK
90,000 grant for cancer research
Cancer cells on a petri dish
Survival rates have improved in other countries, but not Scotland
A research nurse in Stirling has been awarded 90,000 to try to increase survival rates in cases of head and neck cancer.

Figures show that about 5,000 Scots are diagnosed with cancer in the head and neck every five years.

Many are from deprived areas and do not see a doctor until the disease is at an advanced stage and difficult to treat.

Anne Taylor will investigate how the situation could be improved through better support for patients and carers.

Cancer Research UK said Scotland was lagging behind other countries in the treatment of the disease.

'Improve survival'

A spokesman said: "There have been no significant improvements in survival rates and outcomes for head and neck cancer patients in Scotland, compared to other countries, which can partly be explained by deprivation and late presentation.

"Little is known about the specific information and support needs of head and neck cancer patients and their carers or the reasons why people delay in seeking medical advice."

Ms Taylor, who will be based at the Cancer Care Research Centre at the University of Stirling, will focus on cancer of the larynx.

She added: "There is a need to identify ways to improve survival and outcomes for head and neck cancer patients.

"The impact of treatment for head and neck cancer can have a profound effect on many aspects of the individual patients' and carer's lives and we need to gain an insight in how best to assist and support them."

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