Wednesday 10 August 2022 11:01 AM Half of patients with cancer symptoms put off seeing GP for half a year trends now
Half of adults in the UK who have a possible cancer symptom do not contact their GP within six months of spotting a change to their body, a poll has revealed.
And 45 per cent of people who experience a 'red flag' cancer symptom, including coughing up blood, unexplained weight loss and a new or unusual lump, did not contact their GP within half a year, according to a YouGov survey for Cancer Research UK.
Being diagnosed early can help people survive cancer but the chances of this happening reduce significantly if people don't tell their doctor about unusual changes to their health or possible cancer symptoms.
When bowel cancer is diagnosed at stage one, its earliest stage, more than nine in 10 people will survive it for five years or more, compared with one in 10 when diagnosed at stage four, the latest stage.
Campaigner Dame Deborah James, who died from bowel cancer at the age of 40 in June, urged people to check their poo to help increase earlier diagnoses.
The shocking figures come as people across the country continue to struggle to get GP appointments.
A major NHS-backed survey last month found half of sick Britons have not seen a GP in a year, with most saying they find it too difficult to book an appointment.
Critics described the lack of access as a 'ticking time bomb' that will lead to vital diagnoses being missed.
Half of adults in the UK who have a possible cancer symptom do not contact their GP within six months of spotting a change to their body, a YouGov survey for Cancer Research UK has revealed
45 per cent of people who experience a 'red flag' cancer symptom, including coughing up blood, unexplained weight loss and a new or unusual lump, did not contact their GP within half a year
Men notoriously drink and smoke more than women — but that is not the reason they have a higher cancer risk.
A major study suggests biological differences are the real reason behind the disparity between sexes.
Understanding these differences could help to improve prevention and treatment, researchers say.
The study looked at 300,000 middle-aged and older Americans who did not have cancer over 15 years.
Men were more than twice as likely to develop the disease compared to women — even when lifestyle factors were ruled out.
'This suggests that there are intrinsic biological differences between men and women that affect susceptibility to cancer,' said lead researcher Dr Sarah Jackson, an epidemiologist at the National Cancer Institute.
Researchers suggested differences in genes, hormones and the immune system all play a role.
From 2020-21 early cancer diagnosis has been one of three priority areas for primary care networks, in which local GP practices work together with community, mental health, social care, pharmacy, hospital and voluntary services.
One of the key ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan, which was published in 2019, aims for 75 per cent of people with cancer