Bowel Cancer Screening
Regular bowel cancer screening has been shown to reduce deaths
from bowel cancer by 16%
Some people with bowel cancer have the disease, or are at risk
of it developing, before any symptoms appear. The screening
programme is designed to find those people and treat them more
The test is not compulsory but we do strongly advise that
everyone who is invited takes part. The earlier bowel cancer is
detected, the easier it is to treat.
Who is eligible for screening?
If you are aged:
- 60-69 in England
- 60-74 in Wales
- 60-71 in Northern Ireland
- 50-74 in Scotland
And you are registered with a GP you are eligible for bowel
These people will receive a letter, a leaflet explaining the
test, and a home testing kit in the post.
In some areas in England screening includes people up to 75
years old. People over the age of 70, regardless of where they
live, can request a kit by calling 0800 707 6060.
What does the bowel cancer screening test do?
The kit tests for faecal occult blood (blood hidden in poo). It
does not diagnose cancer.
If blood is found in the sample you will be invited for more
tests. Blood in poo does not always mean cancer.
For information about what symptoms can mean please contact our
Information and Support Service on 0800 8 40 35 40.
Find out more:
How to take
the Bowel Cancer Screening Test
Cancer Screening in the UK