Bowel cancer

Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer in the UK, more than 100 people are diagnosed with it every day.

However, if diagnosed at the earliest stage, research suggests over 90% of bowel cancer patients will survive the disease for more than five years. This is why it is important that you or your loved ones complete and return the bowel cancer testing kit. In Leeds the testing kit is posted out to people aged between 60 and 69. Completing and returning your testing kit could save your life as it gives us the chance to detect the disease in its early stages.

Signs and Symptoms

The early signs of bowel cancer can vary and are not very clear. However, they can include:

  • A change of bowel habit (diarrhoea or constipation) for more than two weeks
  • bleeding from the back passage
  • loss of weight or appetite
  • lasting abdominal pain/unusual lump
  • a feeling of not having emptied your bowel properly after a bowel motion

Bowel problems are very common, so it is most likely that these symptoms do not mean you have cancer. If you have any of the above symptoms; get them checked out and don’t be afraid or embarrassed to speak to your GP.

If anyone is worried about bowel cancer they can speak to their family doctor (GP). Those aged 60-69 can find out more about the bowel cancer screening test by calling the national helpline on 0800 707 6060. To find out more about bowel cancer visit the National Bowel Cancer Screening Programme.

“These 3 items could save your life”

In Leeds we have developed campaign materials with the strapline “these 3 items could save your life”. You can download the information leaflet and business card giving you further information on the bowel cancer screening test.

Be Clear on Cancer – find out more about the signs and symptoms of bowel cancer and how you can be screened.