Equipment and Facilities

GUTS provided £150,000 to provide a state-of-the-art training facility with live links to operating theatres and the endoscopy suite.

Colonoscopy Training Facility

A nationwide shortage of medical professionals trained in colonoscopy techniques was impacting on waiting times for patients. We wanted to improve the education and training facilities available to help address this shortage.

A £150,000 investment from GUTS in 2018 provided the latest AV training equipment linking operating theatres and endoscopy suites at the Royal Surrey with MATTU (Minimal Access Therapy Training Unit). Watching and learning from experts is an indispensable part of the training process. Doctors and nurses can see live endoscopic and laparoscopic (‘keyhole’) procedures in high-definition detail, and speak with the surgeons and other clinical specialists as they carry them out.  The money GUTS raised was matched by hospital funds.

Papillon radiotherapy machine

Working with sister charity Bright, in 2014 GUTS raised £200,000 for the purchase of a Papillon radiotherapy equipment for the Royal Surrey NHS Trust.

This technology offers ‘contact radiotherapy’; the dose is administered very close to the tumour which means less damage to the surrounding healthy tissue. It is particularly suitable for patients with early diagnosis rectal cancers. Papillon allows a higher dose of radiation compared to conventional treatment because it is applied directly to the cancer, and so fewer sessions are required. There is little or no damage to surrounding healthy tissue and in most cases the patient doesn’t need to have a colostomy so can expect a better quality of life. The machine is also used for patients with other cancers suitably located for this form of treatment

Endoscopy Unit

In 2013 GUTS funded a £93,000 screening room at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, increasing the number of screens available to the hospital to four.

The facilities provide endoscopic examinations of patients referred to the unit through the National Bowel Cancer screening programme, by the GUTS family colon cancer screening programme, or through the GP service. The unit is one of the best equipped in the UK and receives referrals from across the south of England. In addition to screening patients, the GUTS screening room can be used as a unique teaching aid, beaming live feed 3-D imagery to the University of Surrey’s post-graduate medical school.

What is endoscopy?

An endoscope is a long, thin, flexible tube that has a light source and a video camera at one end. Images of the inside of your body are relayed to a television screen.

Endoscopes can be inserted into the body through a natural opening, such as the mouth and down the throat, or through the anus (via the bottom), which is the normal procedure for bowel cancer screening and is referred to as colonoscopy or bowel scope. It is usually carried out while a person is conscious – it’s not painful but can be uncomfortable, so a local anaesthetic or sedative (medication that has a calming effect) may be given to help you relax. If you take part in the bowel cancer screening programme and blood is detected in your sample, it is likely that you will be referred for a colonoscopy. It doesn’t mean you have bowel cancer but the colonoscopy will establish the cause of the blood so it’s important to attend. Before your appointment you will be advised on what you should eat and drink beforehand in preparation for the procedure.

It will usually be performed on an outpatient basis, which means you will not have to stay in hospital overnight.

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