Survivor lifting lid on bowel cancer - The Malvern Observer

Survivor lifting lid on bowel cancer

Malvern Editorial 18th Apr, 2015 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016   0

A BRAVE cancer survivor is hoping to promote better awareness of the disease by backing a national appeal.

Simon James, from Severn Stoke, was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2012 and has now thrown his support behind Lift the Lid Day on Wednesday (April 22) as part of Bowel Cancer Awareness Month.

In 2012, the 41-year-old started feeling ill but as he had changed jobs and got married the doctor put it down to stress. He started going to the gym but realised he wasn’t getting any fitter and was losing weight.

Simon went back to his GP and following tests a tumour was discovered and quickly operated on. No chemotherapy was required as it was caught early.

Simon, who is now working as a sales director, said: “Bowel cancer is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer so it is essential we talk about the disease and its symptoms so more people know what to look out for and are not too embarrassed to go to the GP about them.

“I am supporting the Lift the Lid campaign and spreading the word because I know from experience how important it is to be aware of the symptoms and to get checked out as soon as possible.

“Someone is diagnosed with bowel cancer every 15 minutes and it claims a life every half an hour. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

“Early diagnoses saves lives so please help us to raise the profile of the disease and its symptoms in order to improve survival rates.”

If diagnosed early, health experts believe nine out of ten bowel cancer patients will survive for more than five years, but if it is diagnosed at a late stage only one in ten will survive that long.

Mark Flanagan, chief executive of Beating Bowel Cancer, added: “One in four of us are affected by bowel cancer in some way, either directly or through family members and friends.

“Yet it is rarely talked about because people are often too embarrassed to discuss the disease and its symptoms.

“As part of Bowel Cancer Awareness Month this April, we hope people in the local area will join Simon in supporting Lift the Lid Day and helping to raise greater awareness so people can get diagnosed earlier.”

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