Brigid & David Hopkins, Wakefield
Brigid and David Hopkins, aged 80 and 72 respectively, from Wakefield, were diagnosed with bowel cancer after taking part in the bowel cancer screening test.
Mrs Brigid Hopkins said: “I had been taking part in the programme for about six years and it was my third test in 2014 which identified a possible problem. This was quickly followed up and within five weeks, yes five weeks, I had completed all the additional tests and had my surgery. Fortunately I didn’t need any chemotherapy or radiotherapy and years later, I continue to be followed up and reassured that I remain free from bowel cancer.
My husband David was outside the age range to be offered the test, requested one. Unfortunately, he was also diagnosed with bowel cancer. He had keyhole surgery just seven months after me, but within a few weeks of his diagnosis. He too has made a good recovery and continues to be under regular surveillance, and cancer free. The follow up visits with the colonoscopy nurses are very supportive and caring.
I would urge everyone who is eligible to take part in the screening programme, to make sure they complete the test. It is done in the privacy of your own home so it’s very discreet, it’s non-invasive and it could save your life. I’m calling on all my family and friends to ensure they do the test and I’ve given talks at my local church about what a reassuring programme this is. David and I have both been very lucky and I’d like to encourage everyone to take the test as we did. I beg everyone not to ignore them. It is so simple and could save your life. We’re 100% clear now, but will want to do the test in future.
Bowel cancer screening can save lives.
Bowel cancer screening saves lives but at the moment in some areas of the UK only a third of those who receive a test in the post complete it. Thousands of people are missing out on the best way to detect bowel cancer early when it is easier to treat and there is the greatest chance of survival.
How you can raise awareness of bowel cancer screening:
- Over 60? (or in Scotland and over 50?), take the test when you receive it in the post.
- If you are younger, tell the people over 60 (or over 50 in Scotland) in your life, to take the test.
Why is screening so important?
Bowel cancer is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer but it is treatable and curable especially if diagnosed early. Nearly everyone diagnosed at the earliest stage will survive bowel cancer however, this drops significantly as the disease develops. Taking part in bowel cancer screening is the best way to get diagnosed early and early diagnosis saves lives.
For more information about bowel cancer screening in the UK, please click here.
It is done in the privacy of your own home so it’s very discreet, it’s non-invasive and it could save your life