The government has recently announced its plans to role out its first ever campaign to increase awareness of bowel cancer.
'Be clear on cancer' bowel cancer awareness will launch nationally in January. The advertising campaign will feature real doctors talking to patients, encouraging them to talk about changes in their bowels and bleeding.
Regional pilot studies have shown that there was a near 50% increase in the numbers of patients seeking advice from GPs and a one third increase in the numbers of urgent hospital referrals.
Health Minster Paul Burstow said "Early diagnosis makes a huge difference to your chance of survival. Results from our regional bowel cancer campaign shows campaigns really work to raise awareness and get patients to their GPs"
Bowel cancer symptoms do vary but important symptoms include:
•A persistent change in your bowels, going to the toilet more frequently and diarrhoea
•Bleeding from the back passage
•A lump in your abdomen
•Unexplained anaemia (low blood count)
Anyone with concerns should contact their GP as soon as possible.
Simon Radley December 2011