Welcome to the Autumn/Winter edition of the CLLSA newsletter. Once again, the editorial team have succeeded in compiling an interesting range of articles for your perusal and reflection.
I have found this edition particularly interesting because, as some of you know, I am currently undergoing FCR treatment and I was attracted to the report on the Middlesex meeting and the work St Bart’s are doing on minimal residual disease (MRD). I will definitely be talking to my medical team next time I am in clinic about the ways in which they assess indicators of remission!
I was also interested in Terry Hamblin’s piece on infections because I have been on monthly intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) for two years now. The reason for starting the infusions was the fact that I was quite seriously ill with two infections in a short space of time due to my diminished immune response’ but since beginning the treatment, I have been infection free. I say this because there may be members who have not been offered IVIg and if you have suffered infections, it may be useful to discuss the reasons why this has not been offered with your consultant.
These two examples illustrate the way in which we hope the association can make members more aware of the range of responses and treatments available to CLL patients. One of our main aims is to provide the information and understanding to empower patients to ensure that they receive the most appropriate and effective support and treatment available. In this context, many of you will be encouraged by the report on the Cardiff CLL Open Day which gives us an insight into the really positive research findings that show the progress being made in diagnosing and treating CLL.
I said in the last newsletter that it is important that we hear from our readers about the usefulness and relevance of the newsletter and its contents. Thank you to those members who responded to this invitation last time and we look forward to receiving more of your views in future. On behalf of all of the trustees, I wish you all an enjoyable and healthy Christmas and hope that you have a happy 2013 and beyond.
Arthur Graley – Chairman