Women are 13% less likely to survive in excess of 1 year following diagnosis of bladder cancer than men, according to a recent report by Public Health England.
Whilst men are more at risk of developing bladder cancer, studies suggest that women are slower at reacting to symptoms, meaning that their treatment for the disease often ends up as an emergency, with delay in diagnosis leading to less positive outcomes in some cases.
One of the key indicators of bladder cancer is drops of blood in urine. This can be a symptom of a number of things, not necessarily cancer; however it should always be a red flag for patients (both male and female) to seek immediate medical advice. It is thought that patients often put new symptoms down to innocent causes, and wait until a symptom re-occurs before seeing their GP. Cancer Research UK is urging patients to be more alert to new symptoms, and to seek advice from GP’s sooner, especially when they identify blood in their urine.
Early diagnosis can lead to less invasive treatment, and ultimately can be the difference between beating bladder cancer and receiving a terminal diagnosis. In 2013, around 2500 women were diagnosed with bladder cancer, with 1500 dying that same year (although many of these will have been diagnosed in the years before). Smokers and those coming into regular contact with chemicals such as hair dye are at greater risk of developing bladder cancer.
If you, or someone you know, has been affected by a doctor’s delay in diagnosing and treating cancer, speak to our specialist clinical negligence team on 0345 209 1491 or (James.Edmondson@clarkewillmott.com).