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“If you’re diagnosed with stage 1 bowel cancer, you have a 90-95 percent chance – a really, really good change – of having a great prognosis,” said Dr Philippa, speaking on ITV’s This Morning. “We can treat this and cure this, we’ve got to catch it early.” In order to identify the condition, you need to be aware of the symptoms.
The doctor said: “You’ve got to know the signs and those are changes in bowel habit.
“Everyone has a bowel habit, you might go three times a day, twice a week, those are normal.
“But if that changes, persistently for more than three weeks, [it could signal a health problem].”
Apart from going more often, change in bowel habit also includes looking out for looser and runnier poos, the NHS notes.
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Other warning signs Dr Philippa named include:
- Persistent tummy pain
- Blood in the poo
- Unexplained weight loss
- Extreme fatigue.
She said: “We have to become a society that looks at the toilet paper and looks at the bowl before we flush.”
The NHS notes that symptoms can be “subtle” and not “necessarily” make you feel ill.