Kidney cancer cases are on the rise over the past decade, new figures reveal, and a campaign has been launched to highlight the symptoms of bladder and kidney cancer.
West Bromwich Albion Football Club and singer-songwriter Peter Andre are among backers of the NHS Be Clear on Cancer campaign, aimed at raising awareness of blood in the urine as a key symptom of bladder and kidney cancers.
The move comes as new figures showed more people are being diagnosed with kidney cancer and dying from the disease in England compared with a decade ago.
Incidence rates of the disease have jumped by 31% over the last 10 years and mortality rates have increased by 7% over the last decade, with around 3,500 people dying from kidney cancer in England in 2011, according to the figures compiled by Cancer Research UK.
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Blood In Your Urine
Here are some of the key symptoms and lesser symptoms of kidney cancer, <a href="http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Cancer-of-the-bladder/Pages/Symptoms.aspx" target="_blank">as stated by the NHS</a>. However - don't panic. If you have one of these symptoms (eg, tiredness) it doesn't mean you have kidney cancer. If you have any doubts, please visit your GP, Blood in the urine is a key symptom for bladder and kidney cancer. The NHS says: "the amount of blood is usually high enough to change the colour of your urine to a reddish or dark brown colour."
Most Common Symptom: Lump In Abdomen
Most Common Symptom: Pain Below Your Ribs
Less Common Symptom: Fatigue Or Anaemia
Less Common Symptom: Loss Of Appetite
Less Common Symptom: High Temperature of 38C Or Above
Less Common Symptom: Unexplained Weight Loss
Less Common Symptom: High Blood Pressure
Less Common Symptom: Feeling Generally Unwell
Less Common Symptom: Night Sweats
Public health experts have said they are concerned by a lack of public awareness of key symptoms of the disease.
Blood in the urine, even if it appears just once, could be a symptom of both bladder and kidney cancer, they have warned. People should visit their GP if they spot the symptom, they advised.
A recent survey showed almost a third, or 30% of people, would wait and see if they spotted blood in their urine again before taking any action, which could delay their diagnosis and reduce their chances of survival.
Around 71% of people diagnosed with kidney cancer survive for at least a year, with around 54% surviving for at least five years.
But the earlier kidney cancer is diagnosed, the higher the chances of survival - when diagnosed at the earliest stage, one-year survival rises to as high as between 92% and 97%, compared to only 25 to 32% at a late stage.
Public Health England said visible blood in urine is a key symptom in more than eight in 10 bladder cancers and more than half of kidney cancer patients.
Other bladder cancer symptoms include needing to pee very often or very suddenly and pain while urinating. Other kidney cancer symptoms include a pain below the ribs that doesn't go away and a lump in the stomach.
West Bromwich Albion has thrown its support behind the campaign by installing heat-reactive material in urinals in the East stand of its stadium in Sandwell, West Midlands. When used, the urinals will show the message about blood in the pee as a key symptom of bladder and kidney cancers.
Peter Andre, whose brother Andrew, 54, died of kidney cancer last year, also gave the campaign his backing: "My entire family and I were devastated when my brother Andrew died of kidney cancer last year," he said.
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Curcumin has killed cancer cells in the laboratory, shrunk tumors in animals, and helped prevent several forms of cancer from developing in animal studies. “Curcumin is a pretty remarkable herb,” Teitelbaum says. There are more than 1,000 studies showing that it’s effective for cancer, he says. But if you’re not eating foods made with curry every day (because curcumin is derived from turmeric), you’re probably not getting enough for cancer protection, he says. Should everyone take a dietary supplement? It’s probably only necessary if you have a strong family history of cancer, Teitelbaum says. Be sure to find a supplement specifically designed for easy absorption, such as the product Curamin.
Some research has shown that B vitamins, including folic acid (vitamin B9), can lower the risk for some cancers, but the research hasn’t been conclusive. Observational studies have found that people who get more folic acid may be less likely to get colon cancer, especially compared to people who are deficient in folic acid, and that getting vitamin B6 may lower the likelihood of getting colorectal cancer. But researchers haven’t done large clinical trials on these vitamins. The best option is to choose a good multivitamin that includes B vitamins rather than individual supplements.
Studies done in the laboratory suggest that some compounds in antioxidant-rich green tea may help stop cancer cells from growing by cutting off their blood supply. One study from China found that people who drank green tea and did not smoke had a lower risk of getting esophageal cancer than those who didn’t drink green tea, but the results from other studies have been mixed. “It’s not the first place I reach to in terms of anti-cancer effect,” Teitelbaum says. But there are other reasons to sip: It lowers anxiety and heart attack risk, he says.
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Eating garlic may lower your risk for breast, colon, esophageal, pancreatic, and stomach cancers, according to preliminary studies. When researchers looked at the results of seven population studies, they found that those with higher amounts of garlic in their diet had lower risk for stomach and colorectal cancer. But the results of clinical trials have been mixed, and researchers don’t know how much garlic you may need for protection. The World Health Organization recommends that people get about a clove of garlic a day in their diet.
Truth be told, fish oil’s strength is not cancer prevention, Teitelbaum says. Some research has shown that women who eat fish twice a week have a lower risk for endometrial cancer, but in general the research looking at cancer protection hasn’t shown much of a link. However, fish oil can do so much for your health, including helping to prevent heart disease or stroke and lowering rates of depression. There’s good reason to focus on getting fish in your diet and consider taking fish oil nutritional supplements.
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"Getting kidney cancer diagnosed and treated earlier can save your life, which is why this Be Clear on Cancer campaign is so important. I can't urge you enough, if you spot blood in your pee, even if it's just the once, visit your GP as soon as possible."
Professor Kevin Fenton, director of health and wellbeing at Public Health England, said: "Receiving an early diagnosis increases the chance of survival for the 16,600 people who are diagnosed with bladder or kidney cancer every year in England.
"Our message is clear - as soon as you spot blood in your pee, visit the GP."
"It's probably nothing serious but it could also be a sign of something else that needs treatment, so don't ignore the symptoms or put off a trip to the doctor."