News of the King’s cancer diagnosis has prompted many people to wonder whether their symptoms are something to worry about. The NHS website has seen a 50% increase in the number of visits since the Buckingham Palace announcement. Maybe you have seen a subtle change in something but dismissed it or you don’t know what to look for.

To help you navigate this, NHS cancer professionals from North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust (NCIC) are sharing advice about what to look out for as well as how and when you should seek help.

Mr Ioannis Michalakis clinical cancer lead at NCIC said:

“It is worth saying first of all that most symptoms turn out not to be cancer. That said most cancers are easily treated if they are picked up quickly. So if you do see a change in anything it is worth speaking to your GP so they can investigate. If your GP suspects cancer, they will refer you to a specialist – usually within two weeks.

“Cancer is more common in people over 50 and as we get older but it can develop at any age. It’s important not to put any unusual changes, aches or pains down to ‘just getting older’ or assume a symptom is because of a health condition you already know about. Whatever your age, it’s always best to listen to your body and speak to a doctor if something seems unusual.

“It’s particularly important to look out for cancer symptoms if you have been diagnosed with a condition that means you’re at higher risk of getting cancer or if two or more of your close relatives (such as a parent, brother or sister) have had cancer.”

You should visit your GP if you have noticed the following symptoms:

  • Coughing for over 3 weeks, chest pain and breathlessness
  • Changes in bowel habits or bloating that has lasted over 3 weeks
  • Unexplained bleeding
  • New lumps and moles that have changed
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Tummy or back pain
  • Indigestion and heartburn
  • Itchy or yellow skin
  • Feeling tired and unwell

Find out more on the NHS website.