This December, Bowel Cancer UK are running a fundraising campaign known as Decembeard to raise money for help into bowel cancer prevention. They are doing this, amongst other fundraising efforts, to fund their research into bowel cancer. This may also help to eliminate bowel cancer negligence.
Thousands of people are experiencing delays in diagnosis and treatment of many cancers. This also includes bowel cancer. The COVID-19 pandemic has made these delays worse for many.
Bowel cancer is the fourth biggest cancer in the UK, and the second biggest cancer killer. Over 42,000 people are diagnosed with the disease every year. It mainly affects people over 50. The diagnosis of around 94% of new cases is in the over 50s. There are also two types of bowel cancer; colon and rectal.
The main symptoms of bowel cancer include, but are not limited to:
- Blood in stools
- Changes in bowel habit
- Unexplained weight loss
- Extreme tiredness
- Pain or a lump in the stomach
If you experience any of these symptoms, see your GP. These symptoms do not always mean you have bowel cancer, but it is better to check any symptoms, as early detection can save lives.
Treatment for bowel cancer depends on which type of bowel cancer you have. If it is colon cancer, then the main treatments are chemotherapy and surgery. Treatments for rectal cancer are chemotherapy, surgery, radiotherapy and chemoradiotherapy.
Bowel Cancer Negligence
Unfortunately, as with all cancers, there are many cases of bowel cancer negligence that we see at The Medical Negligence Experts. There are a couple of main areas of bowel cancer negligence that we deal with, which include delays in diagnosis and treatment.
Delays in diagnosis can be devastating in any case, but in the case of bowel cancer, a delay in diagnosis may mean that the cancer has spread or progressed. It may even affect prognosis. Detecting and diagnosing bowel cancer early is key. Because of this, screening for bowel cancer is available for everyone from 60-74 years old on the NHS. However, due to the pandemic, these services have been delayed. This can affect the cancer diagnosis.
Treatment delays can also have effects on the cancer. The pandemic has also caused delays in cancer treatment in many ways; from patients having treatments at different centres, which can cause delays, to hospitals changing people’s appointments. These delays can cause cancer to advance, spread, and may cause it to get worse.
Sometimes, there is nothing that can be done about delays in treatment or diagnosis, but if it was down to an error, for example, a GP failing to pick up on any of the symptoms and investigate further, then we may be able to help.
How We Can Help
Here at The Medical Negligence Experts, we work with solicitors who have years of experience in dealing with all types of medical negligence. This includes delays in diagnosis and treatment, and bowel cancer negligence. Contact us today by filling in our contact form, or by calling us on 01614138761 to speak to one of our friendly knowledgeable advisors.