Patients diagnosed with cancer are sometimes keeping their diagnosis from their families, research from Bupa has found.
More women than men have considered not telling their families, with 25% of women considering it compared to 18% of men.
The survey was conducted by YouGov on behalf of Bupa questioning 1,115 adults who had been diagnosed with cancer.
Over half (54%) of people would respect a family member's decision to keep their diagnosis to themselves, however 25% said they would be shocked.
In the UK 2 million people are living either with or after cancer, 18% of people know someone who has decided not to tell a close family member or friend about their diagnosis.
Women were also more likely than men to not tell a spouse or partner about a diagnosis, 4% of women would consider not telling compared to 1% of men.
Wanting life to carry on as normal was a reason for not telling people for 41% of those surveyed, 43% want to protect those closest to them.
Of those who wouldn't tell parents or siblings, 31% wanted to manage on their own while 44% wanted no sympathy or special treatment.
Jayne Molyneux, cancer healthcare manager at Bupa said: "Every patient reacts differently to their cancer diagnosis. We are finding more patients choosing to keep their diagnosis to themselves and dealing with treatment on their own, or until they've come to terms with it."
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