Fifth of cancer patients 'delayed over three months before seeing doctor'

19 June 2014

Rectal bleeding has been found to be among the cancer symptoms most commonly linked to a delay in presenting to a doctor.

Some 35 per cent of cancer patients delayed too much before seeing a doctor about this.

The findings are from research recently presented in the British Journal of Cancer.

More generally, in excess of a fifth of cancer patients were found to have left it over three months before they saw a doctor about symptoms.

For 27 per cent of patients, delay was down to a failure to see that the symptoms were of a serious nature, the commonest reason given.

Other reasons, such as being embarrassed, were reported much less commonly.

Based on a survey, the research discovered that waiting was more common for people living in particularly deprived areas.

Patients who had prostate or rectal cancer were found to have been most likely to wait at least three months prior to seeing a doctor.

“This research highlights that we must do more to make sure the public recognises key symptoms of cancer like unexplained pain, unusual bleeding or weight loss, as well as a lump and make sure they get these checked out as soon as possible," commented King’s College London Early Presentation Group co-director Dr Lindsay Forbes, one of the authors of the study.

Posted by Philip Briggs

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare.

Find a treatment, test or scan available at:

or

Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.

or

Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...

Categories

Cancer

© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)