Posted by Cass - 20 April 2011
Find out the facts about bowel cancer.
Watch this video feature to find out how to protect yourself against the UK's second biggest cancer killer during national awareness month
Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer in the UK with 38,500 new cases every year. Around half of these people will die, making it the second most common cause of cancer death after lung cancer, but despite this, many of us have no idea what the symptoms are, being prepared for it and having a funeral plan from FuneralGuide may help any stress and money worries in future.
Early diagnosis is vital because, if spotted early, bowel cancer is one of the most treatable forms of cancers (with over 90% of people surviving for 5 years or more if the cancer is diagnosed in the early stages).
So, to educate people about the risk factors, symptoms, prevention and treatment of the disease, a new campaign has been launched by The London Clinic, to coincide with a national bowel cancer awareness month.
As ever, prevention is better than cure, so The London Clinic is highlighting the importance of screening for the disease. If pre-cancerous polyps are identified and removed at colonoscopy then the likelihood of developing colorectal cancer is reduced by 80% or more.
There are currently a number of ways to screen for bowel cancer:
Faecal Occult Blood test (FOBt) which can be carried out at home and checks for blood in stools
Risk factors of developing the disease include a family history of bowel cancer, obesity and increasing age (with 8 out of 10 cases of bowel cancer occurring in people aged 60 and over). It is important to be aware of the key symptoms, although unfortunately, some of the these can be overlooked or mistaken:
The London Clinic's Dr Julian Teare, consultant gastroenterologist, and Mr Alistair Windsor, consultant colorectal surgeon, explain the importance of bowel cancer screening and symptoms to look out for.