High Peak woman diagnosed with cancer for the second time is helping scientists with research

A woman who has been diagnosed with lung cancer for the second time is calling on people to invest in the type of research that helped to detect and treat her cancer.
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Following tests to investigate digestion problems in 2015, Kelly Harrop who has always kept fit, was stunned when doctors found a tumour on her lung at age 40.

Now aged 48 she has gone from working in stables and running marathons to scheduling her life around hospital appointments.

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She had surgery to remove the tumour, followed by chemotherapy. But doctors knew there was a risk of the tumour reappearing, so they enrolled her in a new research programme, TRACERx .

Kelly is calling on more people to support Cancer Research's latest fundraiser.Kelly is calling on more people to support Cancer Research's latest fundraiser.
Kelly is calling on more people to support Cancer Research's latest fundraiser.

She said: “Because I took part in TRACERx they monitored me longer than the usual five years and it’s a good job they did as when I went last time, they said they had found more cancer.

“If I hadn’t been checked I wouldn’t know anything about it.

“Then here we are in a whirlwind of a couple of weeks, and it always seems to happen just before Christmas.

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“I am now on a targeted therapy treatment which can’t cure my cancer but can slow it down. I am just getting on with my life.

Kelly Harrop has swapped stables for hospital bed after being diagnosed with cancer twice.Kelly Harrop has swapped stables for hospital bed after being diagnosed with cancer twice.
Kelly Harrop has swapped stables for hospital bed after being diagnosed with cancer twice.
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“I love being outside in the fresh air every day, it just keeps everything normal. Then when the time comes to face things, I’ll face it then.

“I don’t know how long it’ll be, and so I’ll just keep doing my normal things until I can no longer do my normal things.”

Kelly, who lives and works on a farm in Chisworth, had never smoked but developed lung cancer due to an abnormal gene.

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She had surgery to remove the tumour, followed by chemotherapy. But doctors knew there was a risk of the tumour reappearing, so they enrolled her in the new research programme.

Now Kelly is urging the region’s philanthropists to follow her lead by supporting the launch of the charity’s new campaign More Research, Less Cancer.

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With cancer cases on the rise in the North West, and across the world, it aims to raise £400m to help accelerate progress in the fight against the disease and is the largest ever philanthropic fundraising drive by a UK charity.

Kelly said: “So many people’s lives are touched by this disease and the numbers are only growing.

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“Cancer is a strange thing, it is changing all the time, making it more challenging to treat.

“There isn’t one treatment that is right for everyone, so it needs so much more money to keep the research going to make treatment easier and kinder for people who have cancer in the future.

“Hopefully one day we can beat cancer for good.”

Joining the calls to support Cancer Research UK’s More Research, Less Cancer Campaign is Professor Caroline Dive CBE, Interim Director, CRUK Manchester Institute and Director, CRUK National Biomarker Centre, added: “Ideas that were once science fiction, are becoming science fact.

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“We’re standing on the brink of discoveries like new blood tests that could detect cancer at an earlier stage, and algorithms that could predict someone’s cancer risk and stop it from developing in the first place. “

To donate visit cruk.org/more-research

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