North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson is supporting Bowel Cancer Awareness Month this year and attended a Parliamentary drop-in event at Westminster, hosted by Bowel Cancer UK.
Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK with nearly 43,000 people diagnosed every year. That means every 15 minutes someone is diagnosed with the disease. Sadly, more than 16,500 people die from the disease each year, making it the UK’s second biggest cancer killer but it shouldn’t be as it’s treatable and curable especially if diagnosed early. Nearly everyone survives bowel cancer if diagnosed at the earliest stage. However this drops significantly as the disease develops.
New findings released by Bowel Cancer UK for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month have revealed that more than four in ten (45%) people in the UK cannot name a single bowel cancer symptom. Early diagnosis is essential to improving bowel cancer outcomes and being able to recognise the symptoms and speaking to your GP when you feel something isn’t right, could save your life.
The symptoms of bowel cancer can include:
• Bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in your poo • A persistent and unexplained change in bowel habit • Unexplained weight loss • Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason • A pain or lump in your tummy
This year Bowel Cancer UK are calling on MPs to help raise awareness of the disease by sharing content on their social media channels and encouraging people to take part in the bowel cancer screening programme when sent the test in the post.
Justin is working with Bowel Cancer UK to improve early diagnosis ad access to best treatment and care both in Swindon and nationally.
Justin Tomlinson said: “Early diagnosis is vital for a positive outcome. It may not be a comfortable issue to discuss, but it is so important that people understand the warning signs and speak to a doctor if they are concerned.”
Dr Lisa Wilde, Director of Research and External Affairs at Bowel Cancer UK, comments: “Bowel cancer remains the UK’s second biggest cancer killer, and it’s shocking that people aren’t aware of the symptoms to look out for. We’re delighted to have the support of Justin who attended our parliamentary event and who will help raise awareness of bowel cancer in Swindon.
“If you notice any signs of bowel cancer, or if things just don’t feel right for you, please visit your GP. While the disease largely affects people over the age of 50, more than 2,600 under 50s are diagnosed each year, so it’s really important people seek advice as soon as possible - whatever their age - if they’re worried.”