Prostate cancer sufferer praises 'game changing' home testing kits

Rod Dennis, a prostate cancer patient, delighted about the new screening at home test kit.

Rod Dennis, a prostate cancer patient, delighted about the new screening at home test kit. Picture : DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

A Norfolk prostate cancer patient has hailed the development of a new home testing kit, which he feels could reduce the fear in men around the disease. 

Researchers at the University of East Anglia and Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital are trialing the Prostate Screening Box which is intended to diagnose aggressive prostate cancer in a non-invasive way, through a kit that can be put through the letter box.

Some 2,000 men across the globe will receive the kit as part of the next phase of the study, with the 64-year-old heralding it as a "game changer". 

Rod Dennis, 64, from Aylsham, was diagnosed with prostate cancer in October 2019, undergoing the typical tests for the cancer which include blood tests, multiple physical examinations and MRI scans. 

The soon to be first time grandfather said: "I think it's revolutionary. It's going to be a game changer when they can roll it out it will be really effective. 

"It would take away the fear many have about this particular disease. With this test, all you have to do is wee in a little bottle. 

"A lot of men may notice there are changes to their loo habits and they won't do anything about or think to do it but do not.

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He said he hoped it would be viewed as normal to have such kits land through the letter box as currently men tended to "shy away" from seeking treatment.

Rod Dennis, a prostate cancer patient, delighted about the new screening at home test kit.

Rod Dennis, a prostate cancer patient, delighted about the new screening at home test kit. Picture : DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

Mr Dennis added: "I feel it will make diagnosing much easier and save so many more lives. it's a game changer."

Those who receive the kit provide two urine samples - one first thing in the morning and the second an hour later, which will be analysed in a lab.

The test can look at gene expression in urine samples, which can tell scientists whether a cancer is aggressive or low risk. 

Lead researcher Dr Jeremy Clark, from UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said: "The Prostate Screening Box part sounds like quite a small innovation, but it means that in future the monitoring of cancer in men could be so much less stressful for them and reduce the number of expensive trips to the hospital."

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