Dame Deborah James partners with Tesco to raise awareness of bowel cancer symptoms

·2 min read
Dame Deborah James has raised more than £6.4 million for Cancer Research UK (Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock)
Dame Deborah James has raised more than £6.4 million for Cancer Research UK (Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock)

Dame Deborah James has partnered with Tesco to raise awareness of the symptoms of bowel cancer.

The BBC podcast host and cancer campaigner, who was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2016, is currently receiving at-home end of life care.

James announced that she had moved to hospice-at-home care in May, telling her Instagram followers that her body “just can’t continue anymore”.

At the time, she also launched a Bowelbabe Fund to raise money for Cancer Research. The fund has raised more than £6.7 million so far.

In a post to Instagram on Saturday 25 June, James announced Tesco will help raise awareness of the signs of bowel cancer by listing symptoms on its toilet paper.

The partnership comes in response to the #GetOnARoll campaign by charity Bowel Cancer UK, which is hoping to spread awareness by calling on supermarkets to put bowel cancer information on their loo roll.

“I’m so proud to be exclusively partnering with @tescofood to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of bowel cancer on of their Luxury Soft loo roll,” James said.

James said the supermarket had also pledged to donate £300,000 to her BowelBabe Fund.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK, with nearly 43,000 people diagnosed every year.

It is the second most common cause of cancer deaths in the UK after lung cancer, taking around 16,500 lives annually.

Symptoms of the disease include changes in bowel habits, blood in faeces, pain in the abdomen, unexplained weight loss and extreme fatigue.

A recent survey by Bowel Cancer UK found that almost half of UK adults cannot name a single symptom of the illness.

If caught early on, bowel cancer can be cured and nearly everyone diagnosed at an early stage survives, Bowel Cancer UK said.