first_imgDD HEALTH WATCH: BOWEL CANCER AWARENESS MONTHBowel cancer, also known as colon, rectal or colorectal cancer, can occur in both men and women.Almost 2,500 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer in Ireland every year. It is also the second most common cause of cancer death in Ireland. If bowel cancer is found early, it can be successfully treated, so therefore early detection is your best protection. Symptoms of bowel cancer can include changes in bowel movements, pain or discomfort in your stomach, unexplained weight loss and more. While other conditions can cause these symptoms, it’s important to be aware.The symptoms of bowel cancer can include any of the following:Blood in your bowel motion or bleeding from the back passageA lasting change (more than a month) in your normal bowel motion, such as diarrhoea or constipationFeeling that you have not emptied your bowel fully after a motionPain or discomfort in your abdomen (tummy) or back passageTrapped wind or fullness in your tummyWeight loss for no reasonOngoing general tiredness or weaknessIt is important to remember that all these symptoms can also be due to complaints other than bowel cancer.However, if you have any of these symptoms it is important that you have them checked by your GP.There are steps you can take to reduce your risk of bowel cancer: Have a healthy diet. Limit the amount of red and processed meat that you eat.Avoid being overweight or obese and maintain a healthy body weight.Increase the amount of fibre you eat, including at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables each dayBe physically active for at least 30 minutes every day.Don’t smoke. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink.Be aware of your family history. If a member of your family has or had bowel cancer speak to your doctor about the risk and the need for screening.Can I be screened for bowel cancer?BowelScreen, the new national bowel screening programme, will send people in the 60 to 69 year old age group a letter asking them to take part in the bowel screening programme.This process has already begun but may take up to three years. Men and women who are called for screening and who are willing to take part in the screening programme are sent a home test kit called FIT (Faecal Immunochemical Test) in the post. This test is carried out by the person in their own home. The easy to use test kit will include step-by-step instructions for completing the test and sending samples by Freepost to the laboratory where it will be tested for the presence of blood.The test results are expected to be normal for more than 9 in 10 people and these people will be invited for routine screening again in two years.About 5 in 100 people will receive an abnormal result and will need an additional test. They will be referred to the hospital for a screening colonoscopy to determine any abnormality in the bowel.Over time the programme will be expanded until the full 55 to 74 age group is reached. To develop the capacity to cater for the full 55 to 74 age group, the programme will be implemented on a phased basis, starting with men and women aged 60 to 69.In the meantime if you have any concerns or symptoms at any time please see your GP.For further information contact Freephone Information Line 1800 4545 55. Website www.bowelscreen.ieDD HEALTH WATCH: NATIONAL BOWEL CANCER AWARENESS MONTH was last modified: April 2nd, 2016 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:awareness monthbowel cancerDonegal Daily Health Watchlast_img read more