MP calls on government to support national campaign to raise awareness of brain tumour symptoms in children

BTC

Mark Tami MP for Alyn & Deeside is supporting the national ‘HeadSmart’ campaign led by The Brain Tumour Charity, to raise awareness to parents and healthcare professionals of the symptoms of brain tumours in children and young people, which is the biggest cancer killer of this age group.

Mark Tami MP said:

Around 500 children and young people a year are diagnosed with a brain tumour each year which is nearly ten a week. Early diagnosis is crucial as it can save lives and reduce long-term disabilities. Symptoms of a brain tumour can present in children in such a way that they are frequently mistaken for less serious conditions.

“The main warning signs that parents should look out for are:

.         Persistent or recurrent vomiting

.         Persistent or recurrent headaches

.         Blurred or double vision

.         Poor balance and co-ordination

.         Abnormal eye movements

.         Fits or seizures

.         Behavioural changes, especially tiredness

.         Abnormal head position such as wry neck, head tilt or stiff neck

I urge all parents to get hold of the symptoms cards or download the smartphone app, as well as to be watchful for the symptoms. If they persist, they need to raise their concerns with their local GP as soon as possible.”

The Brain Tumour Charity has developed a wealth of resources, including credit card sized symptoms cards, posters, flyers, an innovative smartphone app to help people recognise the symptoms of a brain tumour and an online education module for health professionals.

Vice Chair of The Brain Tumour Charity, Neil Dickson, said:

We are very glad that Mark Tami MP is lending his support to help us to raise awareness of this very important issue. It took 9 months for my daughter Samantha to be diagnosed with a brain tumour. Having received many calls from parents who experienced similar delays, my wife Angela and I strongly believed that more had to be done to reduce the time taken for a diagnosis. That is why The Brain Tumour Charity started the HeadSmart campaign together with our partner organisations, who are all leaders in this field. Tragically this comes too late for Samantha, but by increasing the awareness of symptoms among parents and healthcare professionals, it doesn’t need to be too late for others.”

To find out more about the symptoms of brain tumours in young people or more about the national HeadSmart Campaign visit www.headsmart.org.uk.