Why is it important to act on potential signs or symptoms of cancer?
Diagnosing and treating cancer early, before it has grown bigger or spread to other parts of the body, means that patients are more likely to survive cancer.
If the population, including high risk groups, are aware of the possible signs and symptoms of cancer, and empowered to contact their GP as soon as they notice any of these signs or symptoms, this can facilitate the early diagnosis of cancer.
Potential Early Signs & Symptoms
Cancer can cause changes to how your body normally looks, works or feels. It's important to be aware of possible signs or symptoms of cancer, these include:
- a new lump or bump
- a lump or bump changing in appearance or size
- unexplained bleeding from any part of the body
- unexplained bruising
- unexplained or persistent pain
- a change to your usual bowel or bladder habits
- a new or changing cough
- changes on your skin
- difficulty chewing, swallowing or moving your tongue
- unexplained weight loss or weight loss without trying
- unexplained tiredness
- unexplained night sweats
If you notice anything that is unusual for you or someone you know, it's important to contact your GP for advice without delay.
The role of the NCCP
The HSE National Cancer Control Programme launched the first NCCP Early Diagnosis of Symptomatic Cancer Plan 2022-2025 whichaims to provide a strategic, comprehensive approach to increasing the number of symptomatic cancers that are diagnosed early (stages I and II) in Ireland. Download your copy by clicking on the link below.
Below are resources available for your use and contact details for further information or support.
- Primary healthcare professionals’ perspectives on patient help-seeking for lung cancer warning signs and symptoms: a qualitative study (PDF, 1140KB, 15 pages)
- Summary Report: Barriers, Facilitators, and Strategies to Recognise and Refer High Risk Individuals with Lung Cancer Alarm Signs and Symptoms March 2022 (PDF, 1116KB, 24 pages)
- Full report: Barriers, Facilitators, and Strategies to Recognise and Refer High Risk Individuals with Lung Cancer Alarm Signs and Symptoms March 2022 (PDF, 1434KB, 114 pages)
- National Survey On Lung Cancer Awareness (PDF, 1578KB 36 pages)
- Promoting lung cancer awareness, help-seeking and early detection: a systematic review of interventions
- Public Health Messaging and Strategies to Promote “SWIFT” Lung Cancer Detection: a Qualitative Study Among High-Risk Individuals
- Awareness and help-seeking for early signs and symptoms of lung cancer: A qualitative study with high-risk individuals
Early Detection of Cancer Posters and Leaflets
- Know the signs of cancer poster (PDF, 350KB, 1 page)
- Worried about a sign or symptom of cancer poster (JPEG, 1576KB, 1 page)
- Know the signs of lung cancer poster (PDF, 354KB, 1page)
- Know the signs of bowel cancer poster (PDF, 327KB, 1 page)
- It's never too late to quit smoking female leaflet (PDF, 660KB, 2 pages)
- It's never too late to quit smoking male leaflet (PDF, 555KB, 2 pages)
- It's never too late to quit smoking couple leaflet (PDF, 616KB, 2 pages)
Early Detection of Cancer Factsheets
- Female breast cancer fact sheet (PDF, 181KB, 2pages)
- Head and neck cancer fact sheet (PDF, 201KB, 2pages)
- Lung cancer fact sheet (PDF, 177KB, 2 pages);
- Prostate cancer fact sheet (PDF, 329KB, 2 pages)
- Testicular Cancer leaflet (PDF, 320KB, 2 pages)
Lung Cancer resources for community and healthcare professionals
- Detect Lung Cancer Early infographic for GPs and Practice Nurses (PDF 132KB, 2pages)
- Detect Lung Cancer Early infographic for Commuinty Organisations (PDF, 132KB, 2 pages)
- Detect Lung Cancer Early GP and Practice Nurses Briefing Sheet (PDF, 258KB, 2 pages)
- Detect Lung Cancer Early GP and Practice Nurses Education Slide (PDF, 281KB, 2 pages)
- Early Detection of Lung Cancer Information for Commuinty Organisations (PDF, 262KB, 2 pages)
- Early Detection of Lung Cancer Community Organisation Education Slide (PDF, 131KB, 2 page)
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.