Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month:

Bowel cancer is the second biggest cancer killer in the UK, affecting both men and women. Someone is diagnosed with bowel cancer every 15 minutes; over 41,000 people per year are diagnosed and 16,200 people die of the disease.

Nearly everyone will survive if bowel cancer is diagnosed in the earliest stage of the disease. Screening is the best way to detect bowel cancer early, which is why if you’re registered with a GP and aged 60-74, you will receive a test in the post every two years. You carry out the simple test at home in private and it comes with step by step instructions.

At the moment in some areas of the UK only a third of those who receive a test complete it (uptake in East Surrey CCG is 58.5%, which is around average but still far too low). This means thousands of people are missing out on the chance to detect bowel cancer early when it is easier to treat.

I would urge everyone who is sent a bowel screening test to use it. If you are over 60, take the test when you receive it in the post. If you are younger, tell the people over 60 in your life to take the test. Early diagnosis really can save lives.

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