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First Hypoparathyroidism Awareness meeting

On 27th April 2010, HPTH UK and the British Thyroid Foundation participated in an awareness meeting which was part of a monthly series of awareness raising events held by the Kings Mill Hospital in Nottingham. There was a great deal of interest and the event was attended by 130 people. As others sadly had to be turned away at the door, the hospital is hoping to organise a further meeting later in the year.

We would like to thank all those who took part and helped to make this event such a success:

  • Consultants Professor George Thomson and Professor Devaka Fernando, and surgeon Mr Keshav Nigam kindly gave up their time to speak to us about thyroid and parathyroid matters.
  • Judith Taylor, HPTH UK Public Affairs officer and also trustee of BTF spoke about the work of both organisations.
  • Sarah Elphick, Communications and Membership Manager at Kings Mill Hospital organised and co-ordinated the meeting.
  • Bridget O'Connor, HPTH UK committee member and telephone helpline person for both organisations,  had the idea and got the ball rolling.

From L to R: Professor Devaka Fernando, Professor George Thomson, Mr Keshav Nigam (surgeon)

Bridget's account of the evening:

'What can I say? I am bowled over by the response and the support given by my local hospital.

On the night Professor Thomson was very informative. He explained how the thyroid works, how to recognise the signs and symptoms of thyroid disease and the treatments which are available. Mr Nigam talked about aspects of surgery which was fascinating. He described the lumps and bumps and their treatments  - surgery and radio active iodine. He also explained what the parathyroid glands do and the possible risks of surgery to the parathyroids and the voice. Our dear Judith spoke next, and showed slides, about the work of the BTF and HPTH UK and she was brilliant. All the speakers were very  informative and interesting. The doctors (including Professor Fernando, who had been detained on the wards) then participated in the question and answer session which the audience appreciated. I was impressed that the doctors even talked to people one to one after that and all stayed until everyone had been seen. They were all so friendly and approachable and made the evening  a great success.

I was especially pleased that medical students had also been invited along which gave us the opportunity to help raise their awareness about hypoparathyroidism and the seriousness of post operative hypocalcaemia.

Leaflets were given out for the proposed BTF and HPTH UK support groups in my area, inviting anyone along who may be interested in getting the groups established. My local CVS recorded some of the speakers on video which you will hopefully be able to see on this website soon. The new BTF and HPTH UK banners also made their first public appearance!

At the end of the evening I thanked everyone for attending. I gave magnolia trees to the doctors as a token of our appreciation and I just could not let Judith return home without a piece of Nottingham lace for which we are famous. Thank you all.'

Bridget and Judith at the HPTH UK stand


If your consultant is interested in raising awareness about Hypoparathyroidism and if you would like to organise a similar event at your local hospital please contact us.

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