February is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

Tuesday, January 31st, 2017

It isn’t every day that getting your rear into gear could actually save your life! February heralds Bowel Cancer Awareness month so we have compiled some facts and information that could aid in prevention and boost much needed awareness.

Bowel Cancer – what do we know about it?

Bowel cancer is also referred to as colorectal or colon cancer and often begins as growths forming into tiny polyps. Polyps are often non-malignant but this can change due to various factors such as diet and hereditary history causing polyps to turn malignant.

Cancer symptoms such as blockage or bleeding from the bowel can indicate that the condition has progressed from a non-malignant stage and as it advances can spread to other organs.

If you notice some of the following symptoms for longer than 2 weeks speak to your GP.

a change in your bowel movements
or rectal bleeding
Frequent gas or pain
Lumps in the anus
Abdominal pain

It is best to have your GP diagnose and detect the early stages or changes to your bowel or better still, rule out the possibility of bowel cancer symptoms. Other factors such as pre existing medical conditions or even particular foods or medicines may trigger some of the above symptoms.

As a preventative measure, if polyps are discovered they should be removed during a colonoscopy which will assist in reducing further risk of bowel cancer developing. The good news is that when polyps are removed they do not turn into cancer. If polyps become cancerous and is diagnosed in its early stage, approximately 90 percent of cases are treated successfully.

Although bowel cancer is most common in people over 50, increasingly people in other age groups are also affected. Around 55% of people diagnosed are male and 45% are female.

As prevention is best, contact your GP and book in for a clinically proven FIT (Faecal Immunochemical Test) which was designed in Australia. Screening can reduce the risk of bowel cancer and the 3 step test can be done easily.

Contact 1800 555 494 to speak to BowelScreen Australia.