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Simple online calculator can tackle pancreatic and bowel cancer

June 20, 2017

They could support the work of GPs in reducing diagnosis times in line with current Government policy and the National Awareness and Early Diagnosis Initiative (NAEDI) ?? a public/third sector partnership between the Department of Health, National Cancer Action Team and Cancer Research UK. Evidence suggests that simply raising awareness of symptoms and speeding up diagnosis could save 5,000 lives per year without any new advances in medicine.

The study has resulted in two simple web calculators ?? one for pancreatic cancer (qcancer/pancreas/) and one for bowel cancer (qcancer/colorectal)) ?? which are designed for doctors but a simpler version could also be made available on the internet to raise awareness among the general public and to prompt patients with risk factors or symptoms to seek advice from their doctor.

Similar QResearch? scores have already proven effective in previous research in identifying patients at most risk of developing lung cancer, gastro-oesophageal cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, fractures, kidney disease and serious blood clots.

Dr Clare Gerada, Chair of the Royal College of General Practitioners, which publishes the BJGP, said: "Early diagnosis, and access to appropriate diagnostic tests and tools, can make an enormous difference to the treatment and outcomes of patients with cancer and this new calculator, which is concerned with two of the most deadly forms of cancer, has the potential to save many lives.

"Professor Hippisley-Cox and her colleagues at The University of Nottingham are leading the way in devising simple but effective ways to help GPs speed up and improve their identification and diagnosis of cancer, and they should be rightly proud of this new research.

"The very foundation of the British Journal of General Practitioners is research such as this, which serves to improve the care GPs across the UK and further afield are able to provide to their patients."

Professor Hippisley-Cox added: "We are very grateful for the continuing support of the EMIS GP practices that contribute their high quality data to QResearch. Without them, our research would not be possible."

Source: nottingham.ac/news/pressreleases/2011/december/simple-test-to-help-diagnose-bowel-and-pancreatic-cancer-could-save-thousands-of-lives.aspx

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