We know that brain tumours can be difficult for doctors to recognise early because the symptoms can also be caused by other conditions. By talking to patients who have just been given a brain tumour diagnosis we hope to improve our understanding of what happens to patients from when they first notice things don’t ‘feel right’, or start to feel unwell, to being diagnosed. This will help us develop ways to raise public awareness of important signs and symptoms and support GPs to recognise possible symptoms earlier.
Funded by the Brain Tumour Charity, we conducted a qualitative in-depth interview study of adult patients recently diagnosed with a primary brain tumour, to develop a richer understanding of patient experiences, symptoms, and decision-making along the pathway to diagnosis.
We have published two papers reporting our findings:
Scott SE, Penfold C, Saji S, Curtis S, Watts C, Hamilton W, Joannides A, Walter FM. ‘It was nothing that you would think was anything’: Qualitative analysis of appraisal and help seeking preceding brain cancer diagnosis. PLoS ONE, 2019. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0213599
Walter FM, Penfold C, Joannides A, Saji S, Johnson M, Watts C, Brodbelt A, Jenkinson MD, Price SJ, Hamilton W, Scott SE. Missed opportunities for diagnosing brain tumours in primary care: a qualitative study of patient experiences. Brit J Gen Pract, 2019. doi:10.3399/bjgp19X701861