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FOOTBALL UNITES TO TACKLE BOWEL CANCER

3 April 2017

Cobblers supporting seventh annual Know the Score campaign

This April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month and players, managers and personalities from the world of professional football will be showing their support for the seventh annual Know the Score campaign.

Know the Score has been running this week and has seen clubs, charities and governing bodies, including the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) and League Managers Association (LMA), unite to raise awareness of bowel cancer signs and symptoms. Bowel cancer is the second biggest cause of cancer death in the UK, and research has shown early diagnosis is key to survival.

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe, who is supporting Know the Score, said: “I would urge anyone who thinks they may have symptoms of bowel cancer to visit their doctor as soon as possible.

“You’re not wasting anyone’s time by getting it checked out. If it’s not serious, your mind will be eased, but if it is bowel cancer, research suggests that over 90% of patients will survive the disease for more than five years if diagnosed at the earliest stage.”

Thousands of ‘Star of Hope’ badges have been distributed to support the Know the Score, which is the brainchild of former Millwall, Charlton and QPR goalkeeper Nicky Johns. He lost his son, Stephen, to bowel cancer in 2008, aged just 26. The 2017 campaign also marks seven years since the popular former Exeter, Yeovil and Hereford striker, Adam Stansfield, died from bowel cancer at the age of 31.

Teams and match officials will also support the campaign by wearing Know the Score t-shirts while warming up before games.

Bowel cancer is the UK’s fourth most common cancer, with 41,000 new cases each year. It’s also the second biggest cause of cancer death. 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.

• If you’ve had bleeding from your bottom, blood in your poo or suffered a persistent change in bowel habit that has lasted three weeks or more, especially if you’ve been going to the toilet more often or experiencing unexplained looser stools, tell your doctor. Other symptoms include: a pain or lump in your stomach; feeling extremely tired for no obvious reason; unexplained weight loss.
• You’re not wasting anyone’s time by getting it checked out. If it’s not serious, your mind will be eased, but if it is bowel cancer, we know that when it’s diagnosed at the earliest stage, more than 9 in 10 people will survive their disease for five years or more, compared with less than 1 in 10 people when diagnosed at the latest stage. A trip to your doctor could save your life.

HOW TO REDUCE YOUR CHANCES OF GETTING BOWEL CANCER
• Eat healthily: Fibre is very important in reducing your risk of bowel cancer. Try to eat more wholegrains, pulses, vegetables and fruit. Limit how much red meat you eat and avoid processed meats as much as possible. Avoid high calorie foods and sugary drinks. 
• Cut down on alcohol: Drinking too much alcohol can lead to a number of health problems and is linked with bowel cancer. By drinking less, you’ll reduce your health risks.
• Look after yourself: Keep active. Swim, cycle, go dancing - the more you can do, the better. Even walking to your local shops instead of taking the car can make a difference.
• Stop smoking: Giving up will lower your risk of getting bowel cancer. Visit smokefree.nhs.uk.

For more details please see www.knowthescore.org.uk                                                        


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