On Sunday, May 29th 2022 at 5:06pm, I lost my precious dad just 15 weeks and 4 days after being diagnosed with oesophageal cancer, heartburn cancer. He had no symptoms until late January because he had been given Omeprazole for years. If he’d been given endoscopies alongside Omeprazole Dad’s cancer would have been picked up. There is a 59% survival rate when diagnosed early compared to 5% when diagnosed late. My Dad would still be here.  Please help give others a chance, heartburn cancer causes heartbreak.

I love Christmas more than most, the only person that loved it more than me was my dad. He would decorate the front of the house and say ‘it was for the kids when it was really for him! This year he won’t be here, and I wish I could go to sleep and wake up on January 2nd when Christmas is over. The only heartbreak is 2023 will be the first year my dad is not in.

I always send lots of Christmas cards but this year I’ll be donating to charity. However, I will send cards to my nearest and dearest but they too are from a charity. They are from Heartburn Cancer UK.

HEARTBURN CANCER UK exists to raise awareness of the dangers of persistent heartburn. Earlier diagnosis of a more serious problem helps save lives. oesophageal cancer is highlighted as one of the four hardest-to-treat cancers, yet it only receives HALF a percent of funding from the National Institute for Cancer.

> 59% of oesophageal cancer cases in the UK are preventable compared to 38% of other cancers

> 8000 die of oesophageal cancer in the UK each year

> Oesophageal Cancer is the Seventh most common cause of Cancer Death in the UK

How many of you or your family take Omeprazole? If the hospital had continued to do endoscopies or hadn’t just kept giving Dad Omeprazole to mask the heartburn investigations would have continued. At that point either Barretts Oesophagus (a condition associated with Reflux Disease in which the normal cells lining the bottom of the oesophagus are replaced by abnormal cells. In turn, these ‘abnormal’ cells are associated with an increased risk of developing oesophageal cancer) would have been diagnosed and treated or the tumour would have been found. Instead, it was found too late.

They said Dad had 12-18 months. In reality, we didn't even have 18 weeks.

If you are looking to donate to a charity this Christmas please consider Heartburn UK. However, all the more important if the above raises concern with you or someone you know please share this with them.

Early diagnosis saves lives. Don’t allow Heartburn to cause Heartache because you didn’t get checked. I’ll shout this to anyone that will listen because this Christmas my Dad will be missing and there was no need for him not to be. . . .

Love you Pops xxxx

Gemma Lang