Health has been centre stage for the past year. I feel perhaps like many others, I have done a full 360o in terms of my mindset and mental health. When the pandemic hit and Scotland announced its first lockdown we were all a bit shook as to the speed of the sweeping deadly virus Covid-19. The uncertainty and powerlessness of the situation led my mood to spiral and I began comfort eating for the FIRST time in my life. How did I not notice? Emotional eating wasn’t a typical habit of mine. The whole world seemed to have gone to pot. Nothing was normal. I couldn’t see my family. I couldn’t see my friends. Everyone seemed to become really busy. My little boy was growing up fast and I couldn’t share this with anyone. In hindsight I guess I used food as a source of comfort in a time I felt unable to cope. Single parenting a toddler, with no respite, during a pandemic has certainly been tough.Continue reading “Dear Mum… #lookaftermum”
Faecal immunochemical tests for haemoglobin (FIT) are now used in asymptomatic bowel screening programmes and also in assessment of patients presenting with lower bowel symptoms. FIT specimen collection devices have a stick attached to the cap of the tube: this stick has dimples or grooves near the end to collect the correct amount of faeces. Our instructions are simple, namely, “dip the end of the stick into your poo” and “scrape the end of the stick along the sample”, and have pictures of exactly what sample is required. However, many seem surprised at how little faeces is collected, only 2 mg in the FIT used in Scotland for both clinical purposes. Interestingly, some assume that more must be better and do try very hard to give a little (or a lot) extra in the device! To date, very little attention has been paid to this aspect of FIT. Recently, however, a very relevant paper has been published.1
The Scottish Bowel Screening programme is over ten years old. Scotland was the first country in the world to introduce systematic screening for bowel cancer and the first in the UK to offer testing to people aged 50. Lots of lessons have been learned along the way including how to improve the screening test and uptake.
Here are some reflections on current screening from Professor Bob Steele….
by Sarah Toule, Head of Health Information at World Cancer Research Fund UK
Bowel cancer is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer. However, by making a few simple lifestyle changes, we have the power to significantly lower our risk of developing this common disease.
April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, which again offers us the opportunity to further publicise all aspects of bowel cancer screening, diagnosis and prevention. It is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer. However, if detected early, this cancer is eminently treatable and curable and almost all people diagnosed at the earliest stages will survive.
Why should receiving a diagnosis of early cancer be good news? Well the reason is simply that, in most instances, early cancer is completely curable.
This of course calls into question the definition of curable, but if we accept that a reasonable definition is dying of an unrelated cause, with no evidence of the “cured” disease in question, then the majority of cases of early cancer are truly curable.
As part of Bowel Cancer Awareness month, we’re running a series of mini-blogs from cancer experts. Here’s the final instalment from Debbie Provan.
I would like the public to know that healthy lifestyle choices are still important after a diagnosis of bowel cancer, and that whole families can work together on this. Whilst those being treated for bowel cancer may have some dietary restrictions placed upon them as a result of treatment, in general people should aim to eat a well balanced diet, keep physically active and maintain a healthy body weight Continue reading “Bowel Cancer Awareness Month: Working Together To Stay Well”
As part of Bowel Cancer Awareness month, we’re running a series of mini-blogs from cancer experts. Here’s the next instalment from the Detect Cancer Early team.
I would like the public to know…they’re not alone.
The bowel screening test is completed in the comfort of your own home. It’s therefore no surprise that many people feel like they’re the only one that’s asked to do it.
As part of Bowel Cancer Awareness month, we’re running a series of mini-blogs from cancer experts. Here’s the next instalment from Bowel Cancer Nurse Specialist, Aileen Roy.
I should like the public aged over 50, to do the test, and help prevent cancer. If found early cancer is more likely to be curable. The bowel screening test can be done in the comfort of your home bathroom.
A positive test does not mean you have bowel cancer.