This April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month and players and managers are supporting the eighth annual Know the Score campaign.
Bowel cancer is the UK’s fourth most common cancer, with over 41,200 new cases each year. It’s also the second biggest cancer killer. Every 90 minutes three people die of the disease. That’s 44 people each day - the equivalent to four football teams - but it needn’t be that way. Bowel cancer is treatable and curable especially if diagnosed early. Over 95% of bowel cancer patients will survive the disease for five years or more if diagnosed at the earliest stage.
Symptoms of bowel cancer can include:
Bleeding for your bottom and/or blood in your poo
A change in bowel habit lasting three weeks or more
Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason
A pain or lump in your tummy
Unexplained weight loss
Most people with these symptoms won’t have bowel cancer, but if you have one or more of these, or if things just don’t feel right, visit your doctor. You’re not wasting anyone’s time by getting it checked out. If it’s not serious, your mind will be eased, and if it is bowel cancer, the earlier you are diagnosed, the better the chance of successful treatment and cure. A trip to your doctor could save your life.
Port Vale captain Tom Pope said: “Bowel cancer can affect anyone at any age so it's really important everyone is aware of the symptoms as early as possible.”
Throughout football ‘Star of Hope’ badges are being worn during the campaign, which is supported by the Professional Footballers’ Association, League Managers Association, Men’s Health Forum, The Bobby Moore Fund, Adam Stansfield Foundation, Beating Bowel Cancer, Bowel Cancer UK and Know the Score’s founding charity, the Mr Brightside Project