I know that Henry Thompson (Surgical Officer, St Mark’s hospital) one day went to visit someone at home who wouldn’t agree to be screened, and Thompson was an Oxford blue boxer and the person that he went to visit was from an East End London boxing family.And he said that he would challenge the man who wouldn’t be screened to a boxing match and the purse would be the examination. So there were lots of stories like that from the early days when the surgeons really went out of their way to find these people. Ms Kay Neale, Clinical Cancer Genetics: Polyposis and Familial Colorectal Cancer c.1975-c.2010
Ms Kay Neale MSc SRN (b. 1946) qualified as a nurse at the Royal Free Hospital in 1967 and was appointed as a District Nurse in Islington in 1969. In 1974 she started to work at St Mark’s Hospital as a Research Nurse funded by the Cancer Research Campaign. She worked with Dr Michael Hill, who was studying gut chemistry and flora at the Centre for Applied Microbiological Research at Porton Down, and patients with polyposis were part of the group included in their research. In 1984 she was appointed to work alongside Dr H J R Bussey and Dr Sheila Ritchie in the Polyposis Registry, funded by the Imperial Cancer Research Fund. She gained a Master’s degree in 1985 in survey research methods and helped with the computerization of data, collected since St Mark’s Polyposis Registry began in 1924. This unique database has provided support for both clinical and laboratory based research, including the localization of the APC and MYH genes. She is currently employed by Imperial College as the Polyposis Registry Manager and Translational Research Co-ordinator. She was a founder member of the Leeds Castle Polyposis Group (1985), which evolved into the International Society for Gastrointestinal Hereditary Tumours (2005), of which she remains the Honorary Secretary.
A blog piece, Register of interest: Bowel cancer and the Polyposis Registry, is available here.