Professor Fiona Walter, MA MD FRCGP
Professor of Primary Care Cancer Research Director of the Wolfson Institute of Population Health Barts & the London School of Medicine & Dentistry Queen Mary University of London, UK
Fiona Walter is Professor of Primary Care Cancer Research and Director of the Wolfson Institute of Population Health at Queen Mary University of London, UK. She also holds honorary posts at the University of Cambridge UK and the University of Melbourne, Australia. Her research focuses on the cancer pathway, from prevention, screening, early detection and diagnostics to post-treatment care. Fiona co-leads the Cancer Research UK-funded multi-institutional multi-national CanTest Collaborative, aiming to accelerate progress towards improving cancer outcomes by focussing on the transformative implementation in primary care of tests to support early detection of cancer. She also co-leads the NIHR Global Research Group on Advancing Early Diagnosis of Cancer in Southern Africa, and is co-investigator on the NIHR Policy Research Unit in Cancer Awareness, Screening and Early Diagnosis.
Early detection of pancreatic cancer – a primary care perspective
Outcomes for pancreatic cancer remain very poor worldwide. Most pancreatic cancer patients have relevant symptoms and multiple primary care consultations in the two years pre-diagnosis, suggesting that these cancers could be detected earlier, with more opportunities to treat with curative intent, improve disease outcomes and patient experiences. In UK primary care, non-specific symptoms are often attributed by clinicians and patients to common, benign conditions, but some may be due to pancreatic cancer, which are often diagnosed after presentation via routes other than urgent referral for suspected cancer. This presentation will outline the primary care perspective on factors contributing to these poor outcomes, and then reimagine the diagnostic pathway for pancreatic cancer in primary care, integrating clinical and biomarker data for rapid triage and appropriate management.