If you see blood in your urine, even if it is just once, it could be a sign of cancer, a public health campaign warns.
Kidney cancer diagnoses have risen by a third in the past 10 years in England.
And the death toll has increased by 7%, with about 3,500 people dying from kidney cancer in England in 2011.
Public Health England (PHE) says the rise is linked to unhealthy lifestyles – smoking and obesity both raise the risk of kidney cancer – but early
diagnosis could drive down death rates.
When kidney cancer is diagnosed at the earliest stage, the one-year survival rate is close to 97%, compared with about 32% at a late stage.
Visible blood in the urine is a symptom in more than 80% of bladder cancer patients and in most of those with kidney cancer.
However, when asked to name cancer signs and symptoms, only a third of people mention unexplained bleeding, according to PHE.
Prof Kevin Fenton, PHE director of health and wellbeing, said: “Our message is clear – as soon as you spot blood in your pee, visit the GP.
“It’s probably nothing serious, but it could also be a sign of something else that needs treatment, so don’t ignore the symptoms or put off a trip to the doctor.”
Premier League football club West Bromwich Albion is backing the campaign.
It is testing special heat-sensitive urinals in its stadium that, when used, display the words: “If you notice blood in your pee, even if it’s just once, tell your doctor.”