Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care


Epidemiology of diagnosis of cancer as an emergency

The diagnosis of cancer as an emergency is a globally understudied phenomenon and a priority for research and policies in cancer prevention and control.  Using primary care, secondary care and cancer registry data we have examined symptomatic presentations during the months before a colorectal cancer diagnosis in order to understand if there are opportunities for earlier diagnosis, focusing in particular on emergency presentations. We are also examining patient and health-care related factors evaluating possible inequalities in early diagnosis.

This research is funded by a Cancer Research UK Advanced Clinician Scientist Fellowship awarded to Professor Yoryos Lyratzopoulos (2015-2020), and a Cancer Research UK Early Diagnosis Advisory Group Project grant (2014-2016) and BMA TP Gunton grant awarded to Dr Cristina Renzi (2016-2018).

Principal investigator: Professor Yoryos Lyratzopoulos & Dr Cristina Renzi

Contact: Professor Yoryos Lyratzopoulos (y.lyratzopoulos[at]ucl.ac.uk) 

Relevant publications

Zhou Y, Abel GA, Hamilton W, Pritchard-Jones K, Gross CP, Walter FM, Renzi C, Johnson S, McPhail S, Elliss-Brookes L, Lyratzopoulos G (2016) Diagnosis of cancer as an emergency: a critical review of current evidence. Nat Rev Clin Oncol 14: 45-56, doi:10.1038/nrclinonc.2016.155. 

Renzi C, Lyratzopoulos G, Card T, Chu TPC, Macleod U, Rachet B (2016) Do colorectal cancer patients diagnosed as an emergency differ from non-emergency patients in their consultation patterns and symptoms? A longitudinal data-linkage study in England. Br J Cancer 1-10, doi:10.1038/bjc.2016.250. 

Abel G, Shelton J, Johnson S, Elliss-Brookes L, Lyratzopoulos G (2015) Cancer-specific variation in emergency presentation by sex, age and deprivation across 27 common and rarer cancers. Br J Cancer 112: S129-S136, doi:10.1038/bjc.2015.52.