A quarter of Britons do not even bother seeing the GP because it is too much of a hassle to get an appointment, research shows.
One in five people decide not to go because they are worried about what the doctor might find, and almost a third of adults avoid the doctor believing any unusual or persistent change to their body would go away on its own, researchers by Cancer Research UK said.
"A quick visit to your doctor could save your life," Dr Claire Knight, health information manager at Cancer Research UK, said after the survey of more than 2,000 Brits.
Waste of time?
Many polled said they did not want to waste the doctor's time or that they were too embarrassment about their bodily changes to make 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.
Check it out
"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."
14 December 2010
19 January 2011
06 September 2010