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How can MRI scans help improve prostate cancer diagnosis? Join our Twitter Q&A

06 February 2017

On Tuesday 14 February 2017, we’ll be running a Twitter Q&A session around the results of the PROMIS study – with the hashtag #prostateMRI.

The PROMIS study looked at whether MRI scans could improve prostate cancer diagnosis. The results were published on Friday in The Lancet. PROMIS found that using an MRI scan to decide which men need a prostate biopsy could help a quarter of men to avoid the painful procedure.

The results are important, as prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in the UK. Every year, hundreds of thousands of men have a transrectal-ultrasound (TRUS) biopsy to see if they have the disease. The procedure is painful, and comes with risks. TRUS biopsies are also not always accurate, missing around half of clinically important cancers.

We’re running a Twitter Q&A to give you a chance to find out more about the PROMIS results – what exactly the study found, and what that might mean for prostate cancer diagnosis.

We’ve got a panel of experts ready and waiting to answer your questions, and to hear your experiences, or thoughts, on prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Our panel:

Update, Monday 13 February - unfortunately Hashim Ahmed can't come to the Twitter event. Our other panellists, Karen, Robert and Louise, will still be there to answer questions.


Karen Stalbow, Head of Policy, Knowledge and Impact, Prostate Cancer UK

Karen Stalbow became Head of Policy, Knowledge and Impact at Prostate Cancer UK in 2015, having joined a year Photo of Karen Stalbow.earlier as the Head of Policy and Campaigns.

Karen has worked across a breath of strategic communications roles from advertising for a well-known newspaper to consumer behaviour change campaigns in the financial sector. She has tenaciously combined these skills with her passion for politics to achieve impactful policy and practice changes through campaigning, public affairs and policy roles at Oxfam, the NSPCC, Shelter and Barnardo’s. 

Drawn to Prostate Cancer UK after a close friend died from the disease, Karen has played an instrumental role in shaping the organisation’s strategic direction and establishing where it targets its resources to achieve its goal to stop prostate cancer being a killer. 

Robert Oldroyd, Patient Representative, PROMIS trial

Photo of Robert Oldroyd.- Patient representative PROMIS Trial Management Group
Member Grants Advisory Panel and Research Advisory Committee  Prostate Cancer UK
Founder member Nottingham Prostate Cancer Support Group
TMG of European Promark project
Member Nottingham 1 Research Ethics Committee 2006-15
Retired Chartered Librarian – former Librarian of the University of Nottingham
Reader in the Parish of St Paul’s West Bridgford, Nottingham
Member Ruddington Grange Golf Club
Life member Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club
Diagnosed with prostate cancer 2003 > radical prostatectomy > full recovery 


Louise Brown, MRC Clinical Trials Unit at UCL

Photo of Louise Brown.Louise is a Principal Research Associate in Medical Statistics at the MRC Clinical Trials Unit at University College London. She has worked in numerous clinical research fields but now works predominantly on cancer trials and was the lead statistician for PROMIS. 

How to participate:

Our panellists will be sat by a computer and ready to answer questions from 12.30pm to 1.15pm on Tuesday 14 February (GMT). 

You can tweet within this 45 minute slot, or tweet your question before the session begins if you prefer.  If you would like to participate but are not on Twitter, you can also email us your questions in advance.

To ask a question, just tweet using the hashtag #prostateMRI. One of our panel will then reply to you from the @MRCCTU account. 

As we have more than one panel member for our Q&A, the person who is answering your question will put their initials at the start of their tweet, so you know who is talking. 

As well as answering your questions, we're also very interested to hear what you think – so if you want to contribute, tweet using the #prostateMRI hashtag.

We will post a summary of the Q&A session on our website after the event, so even if you are not a Twitter user you can still see what was said.


Further information:

@MRCCTU Twitter page
Read more about the PROMIS results
Read more about the PROMIS study