Oesophageal Cancer Awareness Month 2021

2nd February 2021

  • Only 15 of 100 people diagnosed will survive oesophageal cancer for 5 years or more.
  • 59% of oesophageal cancer cases are preventable.
Malcolm with his granddaughter

Unfortunately, families like Gemma’s know how devastating oesophageal cancer can be. Gemma lost her dad Malcolm to oesophageal cancer in 2018.

February is Oesophageal Cancer Awareness Month so the Guts UK team will be busy raising awareness of risk factors and symptoms of oesophageal cancer, and spreading the word about the research we fund into oesophageal cancer.

Oesophageal cancer is the sixth most common cause of cancer death in the UK. The oesophagus is the food pipe that leads from the throat to the stomach, where the body generates strong acid as a natural part of a healthy digestive system.

Heartburn is a common problem that occurs after eating, lying down or bending over and is usually described as a ‘burning’ sensation. If it lasts more than three weeks or persists when avoiding trigger foods/making lifestyle changes or food gets stuck when you swallow, you should see your GP to discuss further.

Around 10% of persistent heartburn sufferers who have longstanding reflux problems may develop a condition called Barrett’s oesophagus where the cells in the oesophagus start to change colour, which can lead to dysplasia (a precursor to cancer). This can be treated to prevent cancer occurring. In fact, 59% of oesophageal cancer cases are preventable.

Guts UK is proud to fund research into Barrett’s oesophagus & Oesophageal cancer. We are funding Dr Sara Jamel who will examine whether gases from cell changes (dysplasia) in Barrett’s Oesophagus can be detected by a breath test.

Only 15 out of 100 people diagnosed with oesophageal cancer will live for longer than 5 years, yet 59% of oesophageal cancer cases are preventable. Guts UK’s research has the capacity to change these facts and diagnose people while they still have a fighting chance. Guts UK’s research saves lives.

Please give £3 to Guts UK per month. Join us, as we get to grips with guts.

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