Caught early, many serious conditions are treatable. Yet their symptoms are often missed. Would you know if you had a life-threatening illness?
Ovarian cancer is a common cancer, mainly affecting women over the age of 50, who have been through the menopause.
A recent survey showed one in five women wrongly believes a smear test can detect cancer in the ovary.
The symptoms are often mistaken for other illnesses, such as IBS, meaning diagnosis often comes late and survival rates drop to just five per cent.
However, with early detection, chances of survival are 90 per cent.
Constantly feeling bloated or feeling full quickly when eating.
Discomfort in pelvic or tummy area.
A swollen tummy.
Needing to pee more often than usual.
See your GP if you’ve felt bloated most days for the last three weeks, or you have any of the other symptoms.
If you have a family history of ovarian or breast cancer, and/or are overweight, you may have a higher risk of getting it.
Would you know the signs if you or a loved one had a stroke?
Would it surprise you to learn that a quarter of stroke patients are under 60? Or that each year around 400 UK kids suffer strokes?
A stroke is a life-threatening condition that occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. It can cause loss of brain and muscle function or death.
If treatment is received within four hours of the onset of symptoms, the chances of full recovery are higher.
Act F.A.S.T when these happen:
FACE — your face or your eye/mouth may have drooped on one side, or you might be unable to smile.
ARM — you may not be able to lift and hold your arms up because of weakness or numbness in one arm.
SPEECH — your speech may be garbled, slurred or you might not be able to talk or understand.
TIME — if you see any of these signs, dial 999 immediately.
QUICK TEST: Stick your tongue out. If it goes to one side, call 999.
When a usually harmless infection in the body, such as a UTI (water infection), gets into the blood, it can lead to organ failure.
Despite a widespread Government campaign, sepsis is rarely detected early. If it is caught quickly, treatment is a simple course of antibiotics.
Sepsis can affect anyone at any age, but symptoms may vary.
Call 999 immediately if skin looks mottled, blue or pale, or the patient is lethargic or difficult to wake, feels abnormally cold to touch, is breathing fast, has a rash that doesn’t fade when you press it or has a fit, in combination with a high (over 38°C) or low (below 36°C) body temperature.
This is the general term for cancer that begins in the large bowel. Nearly everyone diagnosed at an early stage will survive, but after a late diagnosis, the survival rates drop dramatically.
It’s the fourth most common cancer in the UK and can affect anyone of any age. More than 90 per cent of cases are in those over 50, yet recent research shows that bowel cancer is on the rise among the under 50s.
The three main symptoms to watch out for are:
Persistent blood in the stool.
Persistent change in bowel habits — going more often with looser stools.
Persistent lower abdominal pain, bloating or discomfort caused by eating. It may be associated with loss of appetite or significant and unintentional weight loss.
Most bowel cancers develop from pre-cancerous growths called polyps. But not all polyps will develop into cancer.
Edited by Punteha van Terheyden