Bowel cancer - early detection saves lives


Bowel cancer is the second most common cancer in Northern Ireland and is a significant cause of ill health and premature death. Every year in Northern Ireland over 1,000 people are diagnosed with the disease and over 400 will die.


Symptoms often develop late in the disease, leaving limited scope for treatment and potential cure.

However, the good news is that bowel cancer treatment can be 90% successful, if detected at a very early stage. Further information on bowel cancer screening is available here.

Bowel cancer can occur at any age and symptoms can include:

  • bleeding from your bottom, or blood in your bowel motion;
  • a change in bowel habit lasting three weeks or more, especially if it becomes looser;
  • unexplained weight loss;
  • pain or swelling in your abdomen;
  • extreme tiredness for no obvious reason.

Not everyone with these symptoms will have cancer, but if you are concerned that you have one or more of these symptoms, you should seek advice from your doctor at an early stage.

More Information on Cancer Screening

More about treating bowel cancer is available on our new Cancer Services website: