Bowel Cancer Screening and Awareness Month
Is it time to get behind bowel cancer screening? June is the month to learn more about the prevalence of bowel cancer and how to optimise the health of your bowel.
Bowel Cancer Australia aims to screen more Australians as well as to create campaigns that encourage measures to reduce the number of cases diagnosed each week. Each year, 14,962 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer and thankfully 90% of bowel cancer cases can be treated successfully with early detection.
By 2020 it is estimated that 20,000 cases will be diagnosed. What can you do to avoid becoming a statistic? Consider your diet and lifestyle and critically, your family history as 25% of bowel cancer cases are attributable to hereditary factors.
What to look out for with possible bowel symptoms:
Blood in the bowel movement
Unexplained weight loss
Persistent change in bowel habits
Severe abdominal pain
If any of these symptoms occur see your GP immediately or order a Faecal Immunochemical Test (FIT) screening kit which can be used at home and may aid in reducing your risk of bowel cancer. FIT kits detect pre-cancerous polyps and if a colonoscopy is needed, it could also detect the early stages of bowel cancer.
Although bowel cancer can strike at any age, after the age of 50 the rate of diagnoses increases sharply. It is recommended to repeat the FIT every 1 to 2 years.
What can I do to raise awareness?
Start with you! Download the free bowel cancer app (for Apple and Android) and instantly learn about symptoms, statistics, treatment methods and all important diet and health information that can make a difference in reducing the incidence of this cancer.
Why not raise awareness and funds for bowel cancer via a “matched giving” company fund raising campaign at work? Go meat-free for a week, volunteer or participate in a sporting event!
Need more information or want to download some social media resources? Visit https://www.bowelcanceraustralia.org