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Written on 20th July 2016 by Laura Magson

Public Health England (PHE), a Government Agency, have today published a report stating that as many as 1.7 million people in England could be living with undiagnosed serious diseases such as lung cancer.

Launching a new campaign entitled, “Be Clear on Cancer”, PHE said that conditions such as lung cancer kill more than 100,000 people a year. PHE confirm that diagnosing lung cancer as early as possible makes it a more easily treatable condition and improves survival rates.

The PHE report provides an estimate that there are approximately 80,000 undiagnosed cases of lung cancer in England.

Professor Kevin Fenton, the PHE National Director for Health and Wellbeing, said that the estimated number of people with undiagnosed lung cancer, “is deeply concerning. If diagnosed early, these diseases can be managed and treated successfully. This campaign will help people recognise the symptoms and encourage them to seek help, potentially saving lives.”

The campaign is primarily aimed at men and women who are aged 50 and over. The campaign says that a normal everyday activities such as vacuuming or mowing the lawn which are causing people shortness of breath on exertion should be aware that their problems may be more than just age or symptoms of flu. People with a constant cough should also be vigilant to the risk of lung cancer. People struggling with shortness of breath or a constant cough should visit their GP to discuss their symptoms and ask for an examination to confirm they are not suffering from lung cancer.

Public health minister Jane Ellison has said, “Sadly, diagnosis often comes too late, which can have a devastating impact on those living with any of these conditions, as well as those close to them. The more people we can encourage to get their symptoms checked, the more likely they are to be diagnosed earlier and treated successfully.”

Our advice

Boyes Turner would also advise anyone who has previously worked with asbestos who is suffering from symptoms such as chest pain breathlessness or shortness of breath on exertion to consult their GP as soon as possible.

Asbestos can cause lung cancer to occur such as an asbestos induced adenocarcinoma or mesothelioma.

People who previously worked with asbestos are at a higher risk of being diagnosed with lung cancer than the general population and therefore need to be highly vigilant to any deterioration in their breathing capability.

Boyes Turner would be happy to speak with anyone who has previously worked with asbestos who believes they may have an asbestos related disease to discuss their condition.