The telltale signs of… BOWEL CANCER

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April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month. Here are the early warning signs to look out for

Stomach ache

What change in your poo could signal bowel cancer?

One of the most common signs of bowel cancer is blood in the stool, but other symptoms can be subtle as they don’t always make you feel ill. One lesser-known sign of the disease is a change in the shape of your poo — the blockage caused by the growth of polyps can result in very narrow stools.

What are the most common symptoms of bowel cancer?

According to the NHS, more than 90 per cent of people with bowel cancer have one of the following combinations of symptoms:

  • Persistent change in bowel habit — if you’re pooing more often or have looser, runnier poos, sometimes with abdominal pain.

  • Blood in the poo — sometimes blood in the poo could be a sign of piles, but if you don’t have piles, then this could be a symptom of bowel cancer.

  • Abdominal cramping or bloating after eating — any stomach discomfort caused by eating which often leads to loss of appetite and weight loss.

Other symptoms include having an urge to have a bowel movement without needing the loo, as well as constipation or diarrhoea that lasts for more than a few days.

What to do if you are worried about bowel cancer?

If you have any of the above symptoms, always consult a GP.

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