Blood in your pee? Even if it’s just once, tell your doctor

Local clinical leaders are urging people who notice blood in their pee, even if it’s just once, to tell their GP.

In support of the national Be Clear on Cancer campaign – which began on 13 October – GPs and healthcare staff from the three local NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs): Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven; Bradford City and Bradford Districts are raising awareness of kidney and bladder cancer symptoms to encourage people who notice blood in their pee to go to their GP.

Each year, around 8,900 people are diagnosed with bladder cancer and 8,100 people are diagnosed with kidney cancer, in England. More than 7,500 people die from these diseases: deaths which could be avoided.

Latest figures show that only 1 in 3 people survive bladder or kidney cancer beyond a year, if diagnosed at a late stage, compared with 9 in 10 people surviving when it is diagnosed early. In 2011, 33 people died from bladder cancer and 37 people died from kidney cancer in Bradford and Airedale - numbers which could be decreased if the common symptoms were widely known.  

Dr Ian Fenwick, the district’s clinical lead for cancer, said: “It’s so important that people act quickly if they notice blood in their urine and go to their doctor straight away. Recognising the symptoms and early diagnosis is vital as both these cancers are more treatable if caught early. 

“We are extremely keen to raise awareness about the signs and symptoms of both cancers and encourage those with symptoms to take action and see their GP without delay.

“Don’t ignore it by thinking it will go away; this simple step could save your life.”

A national advertising campaign is also raising awareness about the importance of checking for blood in your pee, as well as highlighting the other symptoms of both cancers.

Other kidney cancer symptoms include:

  • pain below your ribs that doesn’t go away

  • a lump in your stomach.


Other bladder cancer symptoms include:

  • needing to pee very often or very suddenly

  • pain while peeing.


There are ways to help prevent both cancers:

Stop smoking: If you smoker, it’s never too late to quit. Smoking increases the risk of bladder and kidney, and many other cancers. For every year you give up smoking the risk of getting a serious illness, such as bladder or kidney cancer decreases. There’s plenty of support and help available from the NHS.

To get help to quit, call the local stop smoking service on: 01274 437700 or email: stopsmokingservice@bradford.gov.uk

Look after yourself: Try and maintain a healthy weight and keep active. Adults are recommended to do at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, such as swimming, cycling or dancing – even walking to your local shops instead of taking the car can make a difference.

Eat healthily: Eat more vegetables and fruit, fish and wholegrain foods, at least five a day and cut back on fattening foods such as cakes and pastries. This is highly important not just to help the prevention of bladder and kidney cancer but is one of the simplest ways to become healthier and avoid many serious illnesses.

 

Notes to editor

  • The national NHS ‘blood in pee’ campaign is running across England from 13 October to 23 November 2014.


 

  • Be Clear on Cancer is a cancer awareness campaign led by Public Health England, working in partnership with the Department of Health and NHS England.  


 

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