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Derbyshire dad fit and active before ‘devastating’ incurable cancer diagnosis

today11 September 2022 1

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A Derbyshire father still has no symptoms of an incurable cancer despite being diagnosed over a year ago. David Bamforth from Chelmorton, near Buxton, was told he was suffering with a type of blood cancer called myeloma in September 2021.

The cancer affects a sufferers’ bones making them hurt or become weaker and common symptoms are bone pain, fatigue and sudden weight loss. However, David didn’t have symptoms of myeloma when he was diagnosed and still says he is only feeling the effects of treatment and not the actual disease.

A team leader at a freight liner company, David requires a medical every three years and from this routine check-up a small amount of protein was found in his urine. After discussing with his trainer at the gym if the protein could be from protein shakes, David signed up for an online medical test where you send a sample of your blood from home to be tested.

After this online test, David was referred to his GP who queried his kidney function. Subsequent blood tests eventually brought the shocking diagnosis of myeloma.

David said: “It is scary to think if it wasn’t for the medical I needed for work, I might not have found out when I did. It is terrifying because it affects your bones, and I have heard one story where a man didn’t know he had myeloma and then his leg just broke one day”.

A vigorous course of chemotherapy at the back end of last year has been followed by stem cell treatment to suppress the cancer. In a matter of weeks David will find out if this has been successful, if so he will be put on a maintenance drug with a prognosis of a further three-five years.

“It was a total shock,” he said.

“The cancer came out of the blue. I was asymptomatic so they kept doing tests and they couldn’t work out what was causing the kidney deficiency. As you can imagine it has absolutely devastated not only myself but my wife Helen, Sam, my son, my parents, family and close friends.



David and his wife Helen
David and his wife Helen

“Telling everyone was by far the hardest thing I have ever had to do. I am lucky I had my wife with me when I was told the news, because I don’t know how I could’ve told her otherwise.”

David was hospitalised in December 2021, when he caught Covid and had to be on oxygen for nine days. But David has taken the cards he has been dealt and turned it into something positive.

The father-of-one recently scooped the BBC Radio Derby’s Fundraiser Award after raising over £20,000 for charity Myeloma UK. He has raised no fewer than £21,885 towards vital research into a cure since April 2022.

Despite contracting coronavirus and pneumonia while undergoing cancer treatment over Christmas and experiencing breathing problems as a result, David set off on a mammoth 50-mile ride from Scarborough to Whitby in April. He also held a bake sale with his seven-year-old neighbour Grace, which raised more than £1,000.

Upon winning the award, David said: “I was absolutely shocked, speechless and emotional when I heard about the award. All the nominees are already winners as their unselfish efforts are being celebrated. It’s amazing to be recognised for our efforts but I would like to dedicate it to every single person that has helped organise events. Anyone who has donated or contributed in any way.

“Without these people there wouldn’t have been any fundraising. I am so grateful to everyone that has supported and sent positive messages to me during the last year and continue to do so. I hope the money raised goes to help patients in the future suffering from this disease. We will continue to organise future events in between treatment and recovery.”

To support David Bamforth, go to JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/d-bamforth1 – For more information about myeloma or to get in touch with Myeloma UK go to www.myeloma.org.uk. Myeloma UK runs an Infoline on 0800 980 3332.

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