UK symptom awareness of deadliest cancers is as low as 4%

1 min read

Fewer people are seeking help for symptoms of the deadliest cancers because of fears over COVID-19.

New data from the Less Survivable Cancers Taskforce (LSCT) shows that symptoms awareness is dangerously low and COVID-19 has exacerbated an already critical situation.

The percentage of people who would seek medical help for symptoms of a less survivable cancer has dropped from 69% to 59% because of COVID-19. The main reasons for this are not wanting to burden the NHS and being worried about being exposed to the virus.

The LSCT – which Brain Tumour Research supports – represents six less survivable cancers: lung, liver, brain, oesophageal, pancreatic and stomach, and is urging people with symptoms not to delay seeking medical advice.

This new data has shown that only 4% of people were able to correctly identify all symptoms of pancreatic cancer from a list presented to them. Symptoms awareness for liver cancer fared slightly better at 5%, while 10% of respondents knew all the symptoms of stomach cancer and 11% oesophageal cancer. Awareness of lung cancer and brain tumours was 21% and 37% respectively.

More on the symptoms of a brain tumour can be read here, but we do know they can be as complex and individual as the disease itself with symptoms depending upon which part of the brain is affected.

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