Shropshire Council

Bowel screening

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK. If it's detected at an early stage, before symptoms appear, it's easier to treat and there's a better chance of surviving it.

To detect cases of bowel cancer sooner, the NHS offers two types of bowel cancer screening to adults registered with a GP in England:

  • All men and women aged 60-74 and 56 years are invited to carry out a faecal immunological test (FIT). Every two years, they're sent a home test kit, which is used to collect a stool sample. If you are 75 or over, you can ask for this test by calling the freephone helpline on 0800 707 60 60.

Taking part in bowel cancer screening reduces your chances of dying from bowel cancer and removing polyps in bowel scope screening can prevent cancer. However, all screening involves a balance of potential harms, as well as benefits.

It's up to you to decide if you want to have it.

More information of the NHS bowel cancer screening programme can be found on their website.