Health: Know tell-tale signs of bowel cancer
- Credit: NEL Commissioning Support Unit
Spotting bowel cancer early could save your life. In fact, when diagnosed at its earliest stage, more than 90 per cent of people will survive for five years or more.
Sadly, this number falls considerably as the disease progresses to its later stages.
Screening is one of the most effective ways to catch bowel cancer early, and people aged 60 and over can take part in the NHS screening programme. Free home testing kits are automatically sent to people aged 60 to 74 who are registered with a GP; while those over 75 can request a test by calling 0800 707 60 60.
The tests are quick and simple to use – just collect a small stool sample and send it off in a sealed envelope for testing. More information is available at nhs.uk/conditions/bowel-cancer/
While the risk of bowel cancer increases with age – with almost 90pc of cases occurring in the over 60s – it can affect anyone, at any age and any time.
That’s why being able to spot the signs and symptoms is essential. These include:
• blood in your stools
• a change in bowel habits (especially looser, more frequent bowel movements)
- 1 Young mother died after flying to Turkey for gastric bypass surgery, inquest hears
- 2 Dagenham cafe fined almost £2k following waste disposal dispute
- 3 Family of woman who died after surgery in Turkey 'to pursue legal action' in search for truth
- 4 Travel Bulletin: Havering, Redbridge, Barking and Dagenham
- 5 Dagenham woman first UK patient to receive bionic eye implant
- 6 Community comes together in photo shoot for new film studio
- 7 Car park killing: John Avers the 'best friend' of hitman, court hears
- 8 Parents to appear in court next month over death of baby boy
- 9 Barking resident charged over death of baby boy
- 10 McMahon 'really disappointed' to see Dagenham & Redbridge defeated by Stockport
• lower tummy pain, bloating or discomfort
Other health problems can cause similar symptoms, so they don’t necessarily mean bowel cancer. But if they persist, please make an appointment with your GP as soon as possible.
Remember, catching bowel cancer early is crucial – it could help save your life.
Bowel Cancer Awareness Month runs throughout April. More information is available at bowelcanceruk.org.uk/