The campaign’s message is simple: if you’ve been coughing for three weeks or more, go and tell your doctor.

With around 115 people diagnosed with lung cancer every day in the UK, Gloucestershire County Council and the NHS are offering advice on how to spot the signs early.

Lung cancer is the second most common cancer diagnosed in the UK after breast cancer. It affects all ages, but is most common in over 50s. In 2009/2010, one person a day was diagnosed in Gloucestershire, with 218,100 dying every year in the UK. Lung cancer has one of the lowest survival rates because two thirds of patients are diagnosed at a late stage when treatment that could cure is not possible.

The main focus of the campaign will be an information bus touring the county offering advice and support for anyone who might be concerned about lung cancer. On board will be health professionals who will be able to listen to people in confidence about their concerns, discuss symptoms, as well as talk about what happens when you visit your GP and the support that’s available. The bus will be in the following locations over the next two months:

  • Cirencester, Waitrose,                                 20 August 2013
  • Tewkesbury, Morrison’s                              27 August 2013
  • Cinderford, Co-op                                        28 August 2013
  • Cheltenham, High Street                           29 August  2013
  • Stroud, Tesco                                               5 September 2013  
  • Gloucester, ASDA                                       10 September 2013 
  • Stow-on-the-Wold, Market Square           12 September 2013

Cllr Dorcas Binns, cabinet members for public health, said: “People often expect the symptoms of cancer to be obvious and painful so ignore the early signs. Spotting lung cancer early makes all the difference and we want to make sure people know the most common symptoms, so more lives can be saved.” 

Dr Charles Buckley, Clinical Lead for Cancer at NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Getting a diagnosis and starting treatment as early as possible can make a huge difference and could save your life, so please visit your doctor straight away if you have been coughing for three weeks or more. Most probably it will be nothing serious, but if it is a sign of the early stages of lung cancer, treatment is likely to be more successful if the disease is diagnosed at an earlier stage. Other concerning symptoms might include breathlessness, repeated chest infections or coughing up blood.”
Although a cough that lasts for three weeks or more is the most common symptom of lung cancer. Other symptoms include:

  • Coughing up blood
  • Breathlessness
  • Feeling more tired than usual for some time
  • Losing weight for no obvious reason
  • An ache or pain in the chest or shoulder that has lasted some time

The campaign is being supported by Gloucestershire County Council, NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, Gloucestershire Care Services and the Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Trust.

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