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People in Norfolk and Waveney are urged ‘Help us, to Help you’ to get checked with any worrying symptoms

This week, NHS England and NHS Improvement, with support from Public Health England, are launching the next phase of the ‘Cancer: ‘Help Us, Help You’ campaign. The campaign encourages anyone who has had tummy troubles such as discomfort or loose stools or diarrhoea for three weeks or more or seen blood in their pee - even just once, to contact their GP practice.

In Norfolk and Waveney, local people are being urged to ensure that they get themselves checked if such worrying symptoms continue. Ongoing tummy troubles can be signs of a number of cancers, including bowel, ovarian or pancreatic cancer, and blood in pee - even just once, can be a sign of a urological cancer, such as bladder or kidney cancer. 

The latest annual data shows that around 142,000 people were diagnosed with cancers in the tummy area in England but people who are suffering with these symptoms may sometimes be reluctant to visit their GP; they may be embarrassed about their symptoms, or concerned that they might be wasting their doctor’s time, or they may just put their symptoms down to getting older.

Dr Anoop Dhesi, local GP and Chair of NHS Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) said: “Our hospitals are now working hard to deal with the back log of patients on waiting lists for hospital appointments and surgery, and we also know that many people have physical and mental health problems which have developed during the last 18 months, where they might have been unable or too frightened to come forward with during the pandemic.”

He added, “Only a few days ago Amanda Pritchard, the new NHS Chief Executive urged people to seek medical attention if they have symptoms which could indicate cancers, which if detected early can often be treated quickly and easily.”

Possible signs of these cancers include:

  • discomfort in the tummy area for three weeks or more
  • persistent diarrhoea
  • constantly feeling sick
  • blood in your urine.

While it’s probably nothing serious, any of these symptoms could be a sign of something that needs treatment. If it is cancer, finding it early makes it more treatable and can save lives.

Visit nhs.uk/cancersymptoms for more information.

 

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