Whilst the considerable amount of research into leukaemia thankfully means that 70% of childhood cases are now curable, there is not nearly the same hope for the brain tumour sufferer. It is now considered that brain tumours account for the highest mortality rate in childhood cancer.
Charlie’s Challenge was established in 1993 after Charlie Boutwood, then aged 20 months, was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour.
Having had an emergency eight hour operation which was only able to remove 3/4 of the tumour, he endured a testing year of intense chemotherapy followed by 6 weeks of radiotherapy which meant a general anaesthetic every day. Against the odds he has made a remarkable recovery and is now enjoying life to the full, which in itself is a great inspiration to help find a cure. Tragically many other young sufferers have not been so fortunate
The frequency of brain tumours has increased by an incredible 45% over the last 30 years, yet despite these shocking statistics, there are very few ongoing brain tumour research projects in the UK.
Brain tumours kill more children and people under 40 than any other cancer and yet brain tumour research receives less than 1% (0.7%) of national cancer research spending in the UK.