Public 'putting off visiting GPs'


Ella Pickover
Tuesday 18 September 2012 11:07 BST

Health experts are encouraging people not to put off seeing their GPs after research showed that almost a quarter of Britons would not see a doctor for a complaint because of the hassle of getting an appointment.

One in five people are also put off going to their GP because they are worried about what the doctor might find, according to research conducted by Cancer Research UK.

Almost a third of adults would not go to the GP is they believed that an unusual or persistent change to their body would go away in its own time, according to the poll of more than 2,000 Brits.

Not wanting to waste the doctor's time and embarrassment about the changes to their body were other reasons that might prevent people from making an appointment.

Dr Claire Knight, health information manager at Cancer Research UK, said: "We want people to know that you are more likely to survive cancer if it's found at an early stage.

"It's important to get to know your body so you're familiar with what's normal for you. If you notice any unusual or persistent changes, it's really important to take the time to visit your doctor to talk about it.

"Cancer is most common in the over 50s, but people of all ages who notice a change that's hung around for a few weeks should get it checked out by a doctor.

"More than likely it won't be anything to worry about and it will be a load off your mind. But if it is something serious, spotting it early can make a real difference because treatment is often simpler and more likely to be effective.

"A quick visit to your doctor could save your life."


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