Bucks resident teams up with TV personalities in new NHS campaign to raise awareness of cancer symptoms
and live on Freeview channel 276
A Bucks resident is teaming up with other cancer survivors including TV personality Dominic Littlewood and GP influencer Dr Anisha Patel (@doctorsgetcancertoo) in a powerful new film to speak about their personal experience of cancer and raise awareness of key symptoms, alongside TV GP and media medic Dr Hilary Jones.
Michael Sloane, aged 67, from High Wycombe, said: “Back in 2013, I noticed blood in my pee when I was on holiday in Dorset. I didn’t immediately start to worry but then when I came home my pee was alarmingly red so I knew this could be a sign of something more serious.
"I thought the best plan was to get in touch with my GP, who referred me for further tests. Unfortunately, they found a tumour in my bladder but, thanks to the NHS, I was able to have surgery to remove it and got back to work within just two and a half weeks, which was such a relief.”
Despite two recurrences, Michael is now cancer free, and works part time as a bookkeeper with the charity Fight Bladder Cancer, takes regular exercise, cycles once a week, and enjoys time outdoors with his family.
Michael added: “I'm fortunate that I caught my cancer early, and I would say to anyone - if you have any symptoms you’re worried could be cancer, please get in touch with your GP practice - it could be life-saving."
That view is echoed by TV personality Dominic Littlewood, who said: "When I was 47, I discovered that I had prostate cancer but I was lucky because I caught it early. I had an operation on a Monday, and by Friday I was out of hospital and back on my motorbike living an almost normal life.
"To anybody out there who is too embarrassed to go and see their doctor about potential symptoms, I would really urge you to contact your GP practice. Hopefully your symptoms are nothing serious but if it is cancer, the earlier it's found, the better."
As part of its ‘Help Us, Help You’ campaign, NHS England is encouraging anyone who has had tummy troubles such as discomfort or diarrhoea for three weeks or more, or who has seen blood in their pee – even just once - to contact their GP practice.
Persistent tummy troubles can be a sign of a number of cancers, including bowel, ovarian or pancreatic cancer. Blood in urine – even just once, can be a sign of urological cancers, including bladder or kidney cancer.
Any of these symptoms could be a sign of something that needs treatment. If it is cancer, finding it early makes it more treatable and can save lives. Visit nhs.uk/cancersymptoms for more information.
Over 20 per cent of people surveyed in south east England were unaware of some of the most common symptoms of urological and abdominal cancers, including needing to pee urgently, feeling bloated for three weeks or more and diarrhoea for three weeks or more.
Over a third of the people surveyed in south east England did not identify blood in your pee or blood in your poo as typical symptoms of bladder and bowel cancer.