Lynda Bellingham dead: Actress's son claims her life could have been saved by simple cancer test

Michael Peluso believes a colonoscopy could have led to the early discovery of the disease

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Actress Lynda Bellingham’s son believes her life could have been saved if she had been given a simple test for cancer.

Michael Peluso told the Mirror newspaper that a number of tests had been carried out over a year and a half without finding anything wrong.

He said if his mother - famous for her role as a mum in the Oxo adverts and as a Loose Women presenter - had been given a colonoscopy, it could have led to the early discovery of the disease, a key factor in successful treatment.

“She [Bellingham] was a massive champion for getting a colonoscopy. It would have saved her life,” he said.

“They missed it so much. She had two stool tests, a blood test and they never found it.

“She was carrying cancer for 18 months before she discovered she had it.”

A colonoscopy is a procedure that allows doctors to look at the lining of a patient's large bowel for polyps, inflammation or signs of cancer.

According to the Mirror, Bellingham said before she died: “I always had a stool test and had always gone for a check-up but this (cancer) hides. Put £1 away for a colonoscopy when you are 60. It's the only way you can know for sure.”

Mr Peluso added that the family had been comforted by the public outpouring of support.

“A lot of people have said how sorry they are for you and it must be so hard. I feel so, so lucky because they are thousands of people going through the same thing right now but they don’t have that support,” he said.

Bellingham, 66, had spoken of her plans to spend one more Christmas with her family just days before she lost her battle with cancer.

She was diagnosed last July but in late September disclosed that she had decided to end her treatment to limit the amount of suffering her family would witness.

She died in her husband's arms at a London hospital on 19 October.

Her book, There's Something I've Been Dying To Tell You, discusses her illness in detail and has spent weeks at the top of the best-seller lists.

The Press Association contributed to this report