During April, Liverpool Community Health (LCH) NHS Trust will be promoting Bowel Cancer Awareness Month throughout Liverpool.
Each year, around 41,600 people in the UK are diagnosed with bowel cancer – that’s about 110 people every day. In Merseyside and Cheshire more than 570 people die from bowel cancer each year which is higher than the national average.
The good news is that the Bowel Scope and bowel screening can save lives through detecting polyps which can be removed, reducing the risk of cancer or by the early detection of bowel cancer.
The Bowel Scope Screening is a new programme for people aged 55, which looks inside the lower bowel through an examination called ‘flexible sigmoidoscopy”.
The screening can help find any small growths called ‘polyps’, which may develop into bowel cancer if left untreated. The Bowel Scope Screening is an addition to the existing NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme and is slowly being introduced across Liverpool.
People are invited to take part in bowel screening from the age of 60, every 2 years up until age 75.
There will be a range of activities throughout the month promoting advice and support for those diagnosed with the condition, along with tips and advice around early diagnosis.
LCH’s Public Health Promotion Teams will be delivering health talks throughout the city to raise awareness of the condition and to help members of the public spot the signs and symptoms of bowel cancer.
The teams will be at the following locations:
• Friday 17 April, 11 – 3pm, ASDA Walton, Utting Avenue, L4 9XU.
• Tuesday 21 April, 1:30pm – 4:30pm, Bowel Cancer campaign on Lodge Lane.
• Tuesday, 28April, 11 -3pm, Bowel Cancer campaign with Taxi Drivers at Lime Street Station.
Olufemi Olajide, Project Support Manager for Healthy Communities Cancer Collaborative at Liverpool Community Health explains:
“People can often be embarrassed to talk about their bowel movements with their Doctor but it is important to share any concerns you have. Bowel cancer screening aims to detect bowel cancer at an early stage when treatment is more likely to work and save lives.”
Olufemi continues “We will be out and about talking to members of the public and we would encourage anyone with health concerns to come and speak to one of our friendly NHS team.”
The symptoms of bowel (colorectal) cancer can include:
• Bleeding from the back passage (rectum) or blood in your stools
• A change in normal bowel habits to diarrhoea or looser stools, lasting longer than 3 weeks
• Discomfort or pain in your abdomen or back passage
• A lump in yourtummy (abdomen)
• Loss of appetite
• Losing weight
• Nausea or vomiting
People aged 75+ can request a Bowel Screening Kit every two years, by calling 0800 707 60 60.