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Early diagnosis could have made all the difference

07 Jun 2024

Nicola Horlick went through a terrible life-altering event when her husband Martin Baker died from prostate cancer following a late diagnosis- now she's a passionate advocate for men to go for their prostate checks. In light of Men's Health Week (10-16 June) we spoke to her about her experience. 

Nicola Horlick and Martin Baker on their wedding day
Nicola and Martin on their wedding day

Following her own personal experience losing her husband Martin to prostate cancer, Nicola has dedicated her time to helping with charitable endeavours to try and reduce the number of men affected by prostate cancer. One of these projects was assisting with funding for The London Clinic’s Rapid Diagnostics Centre, which opened in February 2024.

“I am very keen to ensure that others do not suffer in the way that Martin did. Early diagnosis is essential as it gives hope of a cure. Those diagnosed at stage 2-4 either will be incurable or will have a high probability of not being cured. I strongly believe that the Rapid Diagnostics Centre will provide men with a chance to be diagnosed early,” says Nicola.  

Given Nicola’s personal experience, she has some specific advice for men who are reluctant to undergo regular health screenings, or have reservations around seeing a doctor for concerning signs and symptoms.

“A few minutes in an MRI scanner can lead to a longer and healthier life, so why wouldn’t you agree to do it? In fact, I strongly feel that there ought to be a national screening programme for men given that diagnosis rates are 1 in every 8 men.”

3T MRI machine
The 3T MRI machine within the Rapid Diagnostics Centre

In response to the large number of people with worrying symptoms waiting to be diagnosed, The London Clinic has opened a state-of-the-art Rapid Diagnostics Centre in the heart of Harley Street with dedicated services across urology, gynaecology, breast and dermatology.

In support of the new Rapid Diagnostics Centre, Nicola Horlick said,

“The London Clinic is a centre of excellence for cancer diagnosis and treatment in the UK. It is a non-profit making hospital and I don’t think that people realise that. Many assume that it is owned by one of the large US private hospital groups.  

The work that the Clinic does is exemplary and I would encourage anyone who is suffering from cancer to seek treatment there. In particular, the scanners and radiotherapy machines are the most modern available in London.”

Find out more about The Rapid Diagnostics Centre here.

Nicola was interviewed by The Telegraph in November 2023, for the piece My husband died from prostate cancer a year ago – I wish Britain was better at diagnosing it. You can read it here. 

Prostate Cancer at The London Clinic

If you are experiencing concerning signs and symptoms such as increased urinary frequency, urgency, pain during urination, blood in urine, or other concerns related to prostate health, or your GP has detected raised PSA levels, The London Clinic have a specialised Urology Clinic within our Rapid Diagnostics Centre, with experts who aim to evaluate your condition comprehensively within 48 hours- find out more.

The London Clinic, in partnership with Oxford Biodynamics also now offers the EpiSwitch PSE test, a blood test that boosts the predictive accuracy of a standard PSA test from 55% to 94% when testing for the presence or absence of prostate cancer- read more here


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