Alert over symptoms of bowel cancer (From This Is Wiltshire)

by Symptom Advice on February 23, 2012

Alert over symptoms of bowel cancer

2:00pm Friday 17th February 2012 in News by Jill Crooks

a consultant at the Royal United Hospital, Bath, is urging people not to ignore symptoms that could indicate bowel cancer.

John Linehan said going to your GP as soon as you have concerns could lead to early detection of cancer and boost your chance of survival after treatment.

Dr Linehan was speaking as a national campaign is under way to raise awareness about the symptoms of the disease, which include blood in your poo or looser stools for three to four weeks.

He said: “Some people may be reluctant to go to their GP about issues like this because they find it embarrassing but it is best to get any symptoms checked out as soon as possible.

“Bowel cancer is the second biggest cancer killer but the earlier you are seen the more chance you have of being treated successfully.”

the RUH takes part in a screening campaign which involves men and women aged 60 to 69 sent self test kits through the post for them to send a stool sample to the laboratory.

since 2009 about 39,000 people locally have sent back the testing kits. this has resulted in 704 patients having further investigations for bowel cancer at the RUH.

Of these, 62 were found to have cancer and a further 302 were discovered to have pre-malignant growths, which were subsequently removed before they turned cancerous.

Dr Linehan said: “The screening programme has been hugely successful and we are diagnosing patients with cancer much earlier.”

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