April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, a fantastic annual opportunity to raise awareness of bowel cancer and funds to support Cancer research.
Around 268,000 people living in the UK today have been diagnosed with bowel cancer and thousands are currently facing weeks of social isolation because the risk of coronavirus to them is so serious. These are worrying and lonely days for so many of us.
Bowel Cancer affects the large bowel which is made up of the colon and rectum. It is also known as colorectal cancer.
How common is bowel cancer?
- Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK and the second biggest cancer killer.
- Over 42,000 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer every year in the UK.
- Around 268,000 people living in the UK today have been diagnosed with bowel cancer.
- More than nine out of ten new cases (94%) are diagnosed in people over the age of 50, and nearly six out of ten cases (59%) are diagnosed in people aged 70 or over. But bowel cancer can affect anyone of any age. More than 2,500 new cases are diagnosed each year in people under the age of 50.
- 1 in 15 men and 1 in 18 women will be diagnosed with bowel cancer during their lifetime.
If diagnosed early, bowel cancer is treatable and curable. If diagnosed at the earliest stage, nearly everyone survives bowel cancer. Survival rates drop significantly as the disease develops. Early diagnosis really does save lives!
The number of people dying of bowel cancer has been falling since the 1970s. This may be due to earlier diagnosis and better treatment. However, it remains the second biggest killer in the UK.
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