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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 April, 2005, 07:35 GMT 08:35 UK
Health quiz to save men's lives
Image of the prostate
Prostate problems are more common in men aged over 50
Men are being encouraged to fill in and return a health questionnaire which could in the long term save their life.

Durham Dales Primary Care Trust is launching a pilot scheme amid concern that few men examine themselves for the symptoms of prostate cancer.

Confidential questionnaires are being sent to men aged between 50 and 55 asking about their health.

The forms have a coded number but if there are symptoms of concern, the men will be invited to a clinic for tests.

Prostate cancer occurs in men mostly over the age of 50.

Urinary problems

Lesley Holliday, a continence nurse specialist with the Trust, has developed the questionnaire and said initial reaction had been positive.

She said: "We are sending questionnaires in blocks of 50 and ask them to be returned within one month.

"The first ones were sent back within two days.

"The questionnaire is very basic. If there are any urinary problems or symptoms, we invite them to come to the clinic."

The men will then be offered assessments and tests previously only available in hospital.

Any untoward results will be passed onto GPs for further management and the men offered advice and support.

Ms Holiday said that although men aged over 50 have been targeted, any man with urinary problems or symptoms is welcome to come along.

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