The Wanted star Tom Parker says he is “staggered” better treatments have not been found for those suffering brain tumours, while a vaccine for Covid-19 was found within a year.
The pop singer, 33, told an All-Party Parliamentary Group on Brain Tumours that he has suffered “moments of real sadness and darkness” since his cancer diagnosis last year.
He revealed in October 2020 that he had been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, but last month announced the results of a scan showed it was now “stable” and “under control”.
Addressing an audience of politicians, brain tumour activists and patients via video-link, Parker said: “I’m staggered they can find a cure for Covid within a year but, for decades on end, they haven’t found better treatments let alone a cure for brain tumours.
“Why is it taking so long for clinical trials to come through?”
The father-of-two, who is married to actress Kelsey Hardwick, said undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy had been extremely challenging.
He said: “My diagnosis came as a complete shock. It’s been an interesting journey so far and I’ve experienced moments of real sadness and darkness.
“Some of those low points I attribute to the level of toxicity in the treatment process.
“It’s truly horrific and disgusting but it was my only choice and I hope it did the job it needed to do.”
Parker has been married to Hardwick since 2018 and they had a son, Bodhi, in October last year. Their daughter, Aurelia Rose, was born in 2019.
He also spoke about the negative effects on his family, saying: “It’s a tragic and devastating situation and the impact on my wife and kids is huge.
“At 33 years old, to be told you’ve got 18 months to live, is horrendous. We’ve just got on with it and try not to think about it too much. There’s no other option.”
Hugh Adams, head of stakeholder relations at Brain Tumour Research, said: “Listening to Tom talk at the APPGBT was a huge privilege.
“He is an articulate, intelligent and passionate man who is advocating for more research into brain tumours and we are very grateful to him and to everyone who spoke at this morning’s meeting for sharing their own experiences.
“Tom provided great insight into what it’s like to live with this awful disease and he highlighted the drastic need for greater funding into this area of cancer research, which is so important.
“Tom has a huge reach. By standing alongside us he is helping us to elevate our campaigning.
“At Brain Tumour Research we will continue to do what we can to amplify Tom’s voice to the parliamentarians who can deliver real change for our community.”