#getchecked plan

Rutherglen Reformer - - Info..Info..Info.. -

More peo­ple are sur­viv­ing can­cer than ever be­fore thanks to early de­tec­tion as the ear­lier can­cer is found, the eas­ier it is to treat.

But there are around 1000 deaths in Scot­land ev­ery year that could be avoided if sur­vival rates matched the best in Europe.

#GetChecked is a na­tional drive from the Scot­tish govern­ment and Can­cer Re­search UK.

The aim is to help en­cour­age more peo­ple to get un­usual or per­sis­tent changes to their body checked sooner rather than later in a bid to boost can­cer sur­vival rates.

The idea be­hind the cam­paign is to make ev­ery day check pat­terns syn­ony­mous with find­ing can­cer early, so that ev­ery time some­one sees a check they think about vis­it­ing their GP if they have con­cerns, at­tend­ing screen­ing when in­vited, or en­cour­ag­ing a loved one to do the same.

A host of or­gan­i­sa­tions and peo­ple the length and breadth of the coun­try have al­ready backed the drive by proudly dis­play­ing their colour­ful checks in­stores, at their work­places or fash­ion­ably on them­selves.

Jac­que­line Kay, who was given the all clear from a rare form of can­cer – myx­oid li­posar­coma – in Oc­to­ber 2015 spoke about her ex­pe­ri­ence as her em­ployer Scot­tishPower got on board.

Jac­que­line, 46, from Cum­ber­nauld, was di­ag­nosed af­ter get­ting a lump that looked like a burn blis­ter on her thigh checked out by her GP.

She said: “I feel lucky that my can­cer was caught early and hadn’t spread any­where else.

“It was iso­lated around the lump, so was able to be re­moved through surgery back in Au­gust.

“I didn’t re­ally think that the silly wee in­nocu­ous lump I found on my thigh could be any­thing to be con­cerned about, so it was a huge shock to dis­cover it was can­cer.

“If it hadn’t looked so un­sightly then I might have left it but, be­cause it wasn’t go­ing away, I thought I had bet­ter get it checked by my GP.

“I would say to any­one go and get checked be­cause the chances are it won’t be any­thing to worry about and it will put your mind at ease.

“But if, like me, it’s some­thing se­ri­ous, then it’s bet­ter that it’s caught early so treat­ment can start straight away.”

You’re 14 times more likely to sur­vive bowel can­cer when it’s found at an early stage com­pared to a late stage.

For lung can­cer, you’re 20 times more likely to sur­vive and for breast can­cer, five times.

Can­cer Re­search UK’s se­nior pub­lic affairs man­ager in Scot­land, Gre­gor McNie, said: “More peo­ple than ever are liv­ing be­yond a can­cer di­ag­no­sis and, over the past 30 years, sur­vival in the UK has dou­bled.

“To­day half of all those told they have can­cer will sur­vive the dis­ease for at least 10 years.

“Jac­que­line’s story shows that swift ac­tion is vi­tal when tack­ling can­cer.

“We know that early de­tec­tion saves lives but to help make that hap­pen it’s im­por­tant that peo­ple with un­usual or per­sis­tent changes to their body go and get checked.

“Re­ceiv­ing an early di­ag­no­sis is of­ten at the heart of suc­cess­ful treat­ment.”

“You can show your sup­port for find­ing can­cer early by tweet­ing us a checked selfie us­ing #GetChecked. For more in­for­ma­tion visit getcheckedearly.org.”

Some 176,000 peo­ple in Scot­land who’ve been di­ag­nosed with can­cer in the past 20 years are still alive – that’s over dou­ble the pop­u­la­tion of In­ver­ness.

There are over 100 can­cer re­search projects in Scot­land, work­ing to­wards bring­ing can­cer down to size.

Four in 10 cases of can­cer in the UK can be pre­vented, largely through life­style changes.

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