BBC journalist Jeremy Bowen has revealed he has bowel cancer after he underwent a test despite showing no symptoms of the illness.
The broadcaster’s Middle East editor declared today he was diagnosed in October after suffering “funny pains” in his leg and back
He said he underwent a test despite showing no symptoms of the illness.
The 59-year-old is now receiving treatment after he underwent surgery to remove a tumour.
Bowen told BBC Breakfast: “I was diagnosed with it last October. I had some funny pains in my leg and my back, when I was in Iraq.
“When I came back I had to go to hospital for a couple of days, but they didn’t mention cancer. They said it was to do with some scar tissue I had from some previous surgery.
“I went to my GP and I had no symptoms, none of the classic bowel cancer symptoms. I got a test and it came back positive.
“From that they found that I had a tumour. I had surgery to take it away. And now I’m having chemotherapy. The key thing is, get tested. I’ve been saying to all my friends, ‘get tested’.”
He added that despite bowel cancer testing being concerned with bodily functions, people should not “die of embarrassment”.
Appearing alongside Bowen, Deborah Alsina MBE, chief executive of Bowel Cancer UK, said: “Jeremy’s diagnosis highlights that we need to urgently deliver an optimal bowel cancer screening programme across all four nations of the UK.
“Screening has been shown to be the best method of detecting bowel cancer early.”