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Public awareness of bowel cancer risk factors, symptoms and screening in Tasmania, Australia: a cross-sectional study


Lee, SM and Versace, VL and Obamiro, K, Public awareness of bowel cancer risk factors, symptoms and screening in Tasmania, Australia: a cross-sectional study, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19, (3) Article 1497. ISSN 1660-4601 (2022) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

2022. The Authors. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License ( The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

DOI: doi:10.3390/ijerph19031497


Tasmania has one of the highest bowel cancer incidence and death rates in the world. Public awareness of risk factors, symptoms, and early detection of bowel cancer is important for minimising the burden of disease. This study measured awareness levels of bowel cancer risk factors, symptoms and screening in Tasmania. An online survey of 3703 participants aged 18 years and older found that alcohol consumption, low physical activity levels, and having diabetes were the least known risk factors for bowel cancer. Over half of all participants were unaware the risk of bowel cancer increased with age, and 53 percent were not confident they would notice a bowel cancer symptom. Over a third of survey respondents did not know that screening commenced at the age of 50. The results indicate that a targeted campaign to increase bowel cancer awareness in Tasmania may help reduce the high rates of morbidity and mortality from the disease.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:bowel cancer, colorectal cancer, risk factors, symptoms, awareness, screening
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Nutrition and dietetics
Research Field:Public health nutrition
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Prevention of human diseases and conditions
UTAS Author:Lee, SM (Dr Simone Lee)
UTAS Author:Obamiro, K (Dr Kehinde Obamiro)
ID Code:148566
Year Published:2022
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:UTAS Centre for Rural Health
Deposited On:2022-01-25
Last Modified:2022-11-02
Downloads:7 View Download Statistics

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