Crawley MP backs increased screening during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

Henry Smith MP is supporting Bowel Cancer UK’s campaign to urge more people to take part in bowel cancer screening and save lives, as part of Bowel Cancer Awareness Month in April.

Henry said;

“I’m committed to improving uptake rates for bowel cancer screening, both locally and nationally.

“I’d encourage anyone in Crawley who’s sent a bowel screening test to use it. Taking part in bowel cancer screening is the best way to get diagnosed early.

“If you’re over 60, take the test when you receive it in the post. If you’re younger, tell the people over 60 in your life to take the test. Early diagnosis really can save lives.”

More than 44 people die from bowel cancer every day in the UK. Bowel cancer screening can save lives but at the moment in some areas of the UK only a third of those who receive a test complete it. Thousands of people are missing out on the chance to detect bowel cancer early when it is easier to treat.

Deborah Alsina MBE, Chief Executive of Bowel Cancer UK, said,

“I’d like to thank Henry Smith MP for supporting our campaign during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month to raise participation levels for bowel cancer screening.

“One in 14 men and one in 19 women will be diagnosed with bowel cancer during their lifetime but it is treatable and curable, especially if diagnosed early.”

Symptoms of bowel cancer listed by Bowel Cancer UK include:

  • Bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in your poo
  • A change in bowel habit lasting three weeks or more
  • Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • A pain or lump in your tummy

The NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme can detect bowel cancer at an early stage in people with no symptoms when it is easier to treat.

If you are registered with a GP and aged 60-74, you will receive a test in the post every two years. Carry out the simple test at home in private and it comes with step by step instructions. The test looks for hidden blood in your poo, which could be an early sign of bowel cancer.

Most people with these symptoms do not have bowel cancer. Other health problems can cause similar symptoms. See your GP if you have one or more of these symptoms.