‘Look before you flush’ to improve cancer 

Residents at higher risk of bladder and kidney cancers are being urged to “look before you flush” to check for the early symptoms of having blood in their pee, as early diagnosis increases chances of survival.

Around 17,450 people in England are diagnosed with bladder or kidney cancer each year. Both cancers affect men and women, although they are more common in men. Most people diagnosed with bladder and kidney cancers are over 50, although people of all ages can be affected. Smokers have a much higher risk of these cancers, other things that increase the risk include:

  • being overweight or obese
  • having other medical conditions, such as kidney failure
  • a family history of cancer

A healthy lifestyle can help reduce the risk of bladder cancer or kidney cancer, including stopping smoking and people looking after themselves by cutting down on alcohol, keeping active and maintaining a healthy weight.

Dr Minesh Patel- Clinical Chair of Horsham and Mid Sussex CCG, said:

 “It is important to recognise that blood in pee could be an early sign of bladder or kidney cancer and if you don't check, you may not notice, so we are urging people at a higher risk of these cancers to look before they flush the toilet.

“We know that people don’t always immediately visit their doctor if they spot blood in pee, which can be for a number of reasons. Some might ignore the symptoms, especially if it only happens once, but if you do notice blood in your pee, don’t wait for it to happen again before getting it checked out it is important that you visit your GP.”

More information about the signs and symptoms of bladder and kidney cancers is available from www.nhs.uk/bloodinpee

Those without a GP can easily find their nearest one to register with at www.nhs.uk

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