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Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

Know the Signs and Get Screened at Emerald Medical Group

Bowel cancer, also known as colorectal cancer, is the second most common cancer diagnosed in Australians, and the second biggest cause of cancer-related deaths. However, it's also one of the most treatable cancers if detected early. That's why Bowel Cancer Awareness Month in June is so important.

At Emerald Medical Group, we're committed to helping our community stay healthy. This June, we want to raise awareness about bowel cancer and encourage everyone to be bowel cancer aware.

What are the risk factors for bowel cancer?

Anyone can get bowel cancer, but some people have a higher risk than others. Risk factors include:

  • Age: Most bowel cancers are diagnosed in people over 50.

  • Family history: If you have a close relative (parent, sibling, or child) who has had bowel cancer, your risk is slightly higher.

  • Lifestyle factors: A diet low in fiber and high in red meat, processed meats, and alcohol can increase your risk. Smoking can also increase your risk.

  • Inflammatory bowel disease: If you have ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease, you have a slightly increased risk of bowel cancer.

What are the symptoms of bowel cancer?

Early bowel cancer often doesn't cause any symptoms. However, as the cancer grows, you may experience some of the following:

  • Blood in your poo (faeces)

  • A change in your bowel habits, such as constipation or diarrhoea that lasts for more than four weeks

  • A persistent pain in your abdomen (tummy)

  • Weight loss for no known reason

  • Feeling tired all the time

How can bowel cancer be prevented?

There are a number of things you can do to reduce your risk of bowel cancer:

  • Eat a healthy diet that's high in fiber and low in red meat and processed meats.

  • Maintain a healthy weight.

  • Exercise regularly.

  • Limit your alcohol intake.

  • Don't smoke.

The importance of bowel cancer screening

The most effective way to detect bowel cancer early is through bowel cancer screening. The National Bowel Cancer Screening Program offers a free home test kit to all Australians aged 50 to 74 every two years.

Getting screened at Emerald Medical Group

At Emerald Medical Group, our doctors can discuss your bowel cancer risk and whether bowel cancer screening is right for you. We can also provide information on how to complete the home test kit and what to do if you have a positive result.

Don't wait until it's too late. Talk to your doctor about bowel cancer today.

For more information about bowel cancer and bowel cancer screening, please visit the following resources:

Emerald Medical Group is committed to your health and wellbeing. Contact us today to book an appointment with one of our doctors.

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