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BLF research breakthroughs can give me a future with my family

Dave wants research to help more people like him with mesothelioma

The news I had mesothelioma hit me on the 29 October 2015 - the night before our daughter's 6th birthday.

David Staley

It was also just 3 weeks before my 40th, and 3 weeks after my wife’s 40th.

Nothing can prepare you for the devastating news of being told you have cancer - especially one where there is currently no cure. 

Within 10 days of my diagnosis I had several appointments, and listened to varied advice from different specialists, to decide on best course of treatment - which makes the decisions even tougher.

This is the problem with mesothelioma - there's not enough research being done. But with our support the BLF are changing that. Together we can find a cure.

Radical high-risk surgery 

Because of my age, and relative fitness I was given some radical surgery, which included removing my left lung.

It had a high risk of death – 1 in 20. But I wanted to give it my best shot and try to get rid of this disease. Being a very proud parent of 2 wonderful kids - and wanting to see them grow up - made the decision easier.

I went into theatre, and after 4 hours I was out - breathing normally with one lung and no support! There was one very scary night, but 12 days later I was home.

I had chemotherapy now. It was harder than I could have imagined. It drained all my energy, and I felt worse than I did after the operation. Chemo is so up and down. 

Together, we’re helping others

I'm sharing my story because I want to help others.

The BLF is doing lots of research into mesothelioma. Researchers like Professor Anthony Chalmers have made breakthroughs and they’re still working. He’s hoping to find new drugs that can weaken mesothelioma cells enough to make radiotherapy more effective.

But they can’t do it alone. They need our help to fund research. There’s still so much more research that needs to be done to find the breakthroughs that give me a future with my family.

My motto is, "Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible," by Francis of Assisi.

Together we can beat lung disease, against all the odds.

Help with a donation today

You can read more about Dave's story on his blogThis story was updated in April 2019. 

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10 May 2019