Bowel cancer tests rolled out in Suffolk

SUFFOLK: Screening for bowel cancer has been expanded across the county and is set to save even more lives.

Naomi Cassidy

SUFFOLK: Screening for bowel cancer has been expanded across the county and is set to save even more lives.

People in east Suffolk will now receive kits to screen for bowel cancer, which results in 17,000 deaths in the UK each year and is the third most common cancer.

NHS Suffolk and Ipswich Hospital worked together to meet the Department of Health's deadline, which was to ensure all primary care trusts were offering screening to all patients by December this year.

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West Suffolk patients already have a screening programme in place and are also urged to take part in screening when they get the chance.

Hossein Khaled, lead for screening at NHS Suffolk, said: “There are 35,000 new cases of bowel cancer each year. Screening for it means that patients will get prompt treatment.

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“It is vitally important when you are sent this kit - and information from the Bowel Cancer Screening Hub - that you take part.

“It is an easy test and can be undertaken in the privacy of your own home. The overwhelming majority of people who participate will have no problems whatsoever and will be sent another test in two years. A small number will need further investigation, which will take place at hospital.”

John Wyke, consultant in gastroenterology at Ipswich Hospital, added: “People with a positive test will be seen by a specialist nurse at the Ipswich Hospital within seven days and offered further tests within two weeks.

“Around one in 10 of these people will be found to have bowel cancer which, if discovered early, is one of the most curable types of cancer. Screening in this way reduces death from bowel cancer by about 15 per cent.”

Have you had cancer and want to tell us your experience? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

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