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A chance to pay back


“I hope my gift will make it possible for others to live long and happy lives.” – Barbara Smith

Thanks to a clinical trial, Barbara Smith was able to beat a rare but aggressive form of cancer. Now in remission, Barbara is grateful for the extra years she has lived, and wants to pay it forward in the same way that others have done before her: with a gift in her will to Cancer Council NSW to benefit future patients.

In 1998, Barbara was diagnosed with uterine leiomyosarcoma. This is a less common form of uterine cancer and often spreads to other parts of the body. The cancer located in Barbara’s uterus was successfully removed surgically; unfortunately, five months later, a secondary cancer spread into her left lung.

cancer-council-nswBarbara was placed in a clinical trial, which saw her undergo chemotherapy for the secondary cancer. As a public patient, she received treatment and medical care at very little cost to herself. The trial was successful for her, and she has now been in remission for 14 years. Barbara wishes to help others have success stories like her own, by supporting research conducted and funded by Cancer Council NSW.

Cancer Council NSW has funded over $136 million in cancer research over the last 10 years. One current research program is investigating surgical techniques for uterine cancer to improve the quality of life for patients. A team led by Professor Andreas Obermair of the University of Queensland has been exploring whether keyhole surgery can be effective in treating uterine cancer. The clinical trial is demonstrating that the surgery is practical and safe, while also reducing a number of side effects. Patients in the trial experienced less visible scarring, tissue damage and blood loss. The patients’ stay in hospital was reduced from five days to two, and there have been fewer complications.

Barbara now lives with the prospect of a long and happy future; whilst her battles may be over, she is determined to help all those who fall into this statistic: “I hope my gift will make it possible for others to live long and happy lives”.

“My treatment was no doubt funded by others, so I have decided to leave a gift to Cancer Council NSW to fund further research,” she says.

cancer-council-nsw-logoIf you would like to contact Cancer Council NSW to discuss how you can leave a gift in your will please call Caroline Lord
(02) 9334 1479


About the author

Alana Lowes

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