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Bowel Cancer Awareness

The NHS want to raise awareness of the home test faecal immunochemical test (FIT) kit, which collects a small sample of poo and then is sent to a lab. If the test finds anything unusual, you might be asked to have further tests to confirm or rule out cancer.

Bowel cancer is the 4th most common cancer in the UK.

Screening can help prevent bowel cancer or find it at an early stage, when it’s easier to treat.

You will be offered a screening every 2 years between the ages between 60 and 74 years old. The programme has also started to include 58 year old’s, so you may get a test earlier.

Put it by the loo, Don’t put it off

If you are worried that you may have missed your invitation or have lost or thrown away the kit, you can call the free bowel cancer screening helpline for advice on 0800 707 60 60.

If you have symptoms that may suggest bowel cancer, even if you have completed a test kit speak with your GP.

Symptoms to look out for include:

  • blood in your poo
  • looser poo, pooing more often and/or constipation
  • a pain or lump in your abdomen (tummy)
  • feeling more tired than usual for some time
  • losing weight for no obvious reason

These symptoms do not necessarily mean that you have bowel cancer. But if you have any of these symptoms for 3 weeks or more or a family history of bowel cancer, please speak with your GP.

For more information about bowel cancer and the screening programme visit: nhs.uk/bowel-screening.

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