Saturday, May 28 is World Blood Cancer Day, an opportunity to educate Australians on blood cancer signs and symptoms to enable early diagnosis and improve chances of survival.
4 in 5 Australians not confident in recognising main symptoms of blood cancer.
Leukaemia Foundation urges the community not to postpone GP appointments if they are experiencing any signs or symptoms.
This World Blood Cancer Day the Leukaemia Foundation is urging Australians to be aware of the signs and symptoms of blood cancer and not to postpone trips to their GP if they are experiencing one or more of these. 1
. Despite this, the Leukaemia Foundation ‘[This] is Blood Cancer’ research confirmed four in five Australians (78%) aren’t confident they can identify the main symptoms of blood cancer, leaving many at risk of a delayed diagnosis and treatment2
. Leukaemia Foundation CEO Chis Tanti said the symptoms of blood cancer could sometimes be subtle, and with the rise in COVID-19 and flu circulating in the community, there is a risk of blood cancer symptoms being dismissed or mistaken for another virus. Blood cancer symptoms can also vary depending on the type of blood cancer (and individual), such as leukaemia, lymphoma, myeloma, or other blood disorders. “Ongoing symptoms like recurrent infections, increased fatigue, night sweats, bone pain, bruising or enlarged lymph nodes should be immediately discussed with your GP or specialist, as early diagnosis can play a key role in surviving blood cancer – particularly more aggressive types. It’s therefore critically important that you are examined properly.” “We also know that blood cancer sadly does not discriminate. It can develop in anyone right now, it can occur at any age and at any stage of life, and there are no screening programs available to detect it and no way to prevent it through lifestyle change.” According to the Leukaemia Foundation research, just under one third of Australians (30%) admitted that even if they were experiencing any of the main symptoms associated with blood cancer, they weren’t confident or sure that they would consult their GP about them3
. “The first step to beating blood cancer is raising awareness of the signs and symptoms. That is why the Leukaemia Foundation is urging all Australians not to postpone trips to their doctor. It could save your life.” Tanti said.
When combined, blood cancers are the second most diagnosed cancers in Australia, with 50 Australians diagnosed every day. Blood cancers are also the second most common cause of cancer deaths in Australia, claiming more lives than breast cancer and melanoma combined