Bowel Cancer Screening




Bowel Cancer

Bowel cancer can affect the colon, rectum or the small bowel.

The symptoms of bowel cancer include:

  • Bleeding from the back passage or blood in your poo.
  • A change from your normal bowel habits to a more loose poo, which has been going on longer than 4-6 weeks.
  • A lump that your doctor can feel inside your bottom or tummy (more often on the right side).
  • A feeling as if you needed to poo.
  • Weight loss.
  • Pain in your tummy or bottom.
  • Being anaemic - bowel tumours can bleed, and so this often causes you to have a low amount of red blood cells. This is called anaemia and can cause tiredness and sometimes breathlessness.

Image of a person with pains


Bowel cancer screening

How do I get a screening kit?

Age extension information for GPs In August 2018, ministers agreed that bowel cancer screening in England should be offered to people from the age of 50. NHS England and Improvement (NHSEI) began the age extension process from April 2021, starting a gradual expansion of the programme to include 56 year olds. This is the first phase of the gradual roll out to lower the screening starting age from 60 to 50 between now and 2025.

NHS bowel cancer screening is offered every 2 years.

Visit the NHS website for more information on this:

Bowel cancer screening - NHS


Macmillan cancer support

Do you have any questions about cancer?

You can visit their website, or call 0808 808 000 free (Monday to Friday 9am – 8pm).