Bowel cancer symptoms can be subtle and also very common – most people with them do not have cancer.
Constipation, where you pass harder stools less often, is rarely caused by serious bowel conditions, but a persistent change in bower habit or blood in stools can be a sign of the disease.
It is one of the most common types of cancer diagnosed in the UK, and most people diagnosed with it are over the age of 60.
While bowel cancer symptoms could be mistaken for less serious health conditions, you should see your GP if they persist for more than four weeks. Feeling tired or weakness of no apparent reason is one of the less obvious signs.
Tiredness for no apparent reason can be a sign of bowel cancer as it may be a result of blood loss from your bowel, which can result in anaemia, according to Bupa.
Anaemia is when there are too few red blood cells in your blood.
But there are four other symptoms linked to the disease that should be noted.
Blood in your poo – this may be mixed into your poo or flecks on the surface or you may see it in the toilet or on toilet paper.
Changes in your bowel habit that last for longer than three weeks could also be a sign – going the toilet more often or more urgently, the consistency of your poo (looser or harder), and straining or feelings of incomplete emptying of the bowel.
Pain, discomfort or bloating in you abdomen can also be an indicator. You may feel this generally in your abdomen or in a specific area.
The final sign can be unexplained weight loss and/or nausea. If you have lost weight for no apparent reason and or feel sick you should visit your GP.
You could lower your risk of bowel cancer by making some simple lifestyle changes.