14th February 2019

Patient documents treatment experience in blog

A hospice patient living with throat cancer is sharing his treatment experience online – in the hope of helping others in a similar situation.

Stewart Foster, who is 59, was diagnosed with cancer in July 2018 and began chemotherapy in October.

He was referred to St Richard’s Hospice and is receiving care from its Community Team – along with complementary therapy to help manage some of his symptoms.

The Worcester resident began his blog in November to record his treatment and its side-effects – both as a ‘diary’ for his own use and to share with others facing a similar situation.

Writing on his blog, Mr Foster explained: “For me, it [the blog] helps as a cross-reference to see where I was, what I was feeling, what benefit I was getting and when.

“This reflection really is helping me to cope with the effects. I now know that I have a date schedule that shows me how much longer I have to go before that symptom either starts or stops. I find it difficult to express how much this supports you during your treatment.

“My reason for doing this in a public manner is to hopefully reach those who, like me, were curious about what was coming as well as explaining what I discovered.”

The first-time blogger, who lives with his wife, Anna, aims to publish a post every day – and documents not only his physical state, but also describes the impact on his mental well-being.

“I have had 96 days now where no day is ever the same,” he said. “I hope to stop others going through some of the stuff I have been through by following the blog, reading it and thinking: ‘If he can do it, I can do it’.”

To read Mr Foster’s blog, visit throatcancerat59.wordpress.com