It is known that regular screening can help to catch cancer in its early stages, preventing the cancer from becoming more advanced. The earlier the cancer is detected the higher the success rates in treating the cancer. Early bowel cancer detection also reduces the chances of needing highly invasive treatments.
Bowel Cancer Screening Test – catch it early and save lives
Bowel scope screening is the latest bowel cancer screening test. It was introduced in 2013 and is being rolled out across the country. It is offered to men and women aged 55 years, and is often carried out alongside the FOB.
This bowel cancer screening test is a simple procedure. The test is carried out via a flexible sigmoidoscopy, which looks at the lower part of your large bowel. This is a flexible, thin tube with a tiny camera on the end. The procedure is carried out by highly trained, specialist nurses, and they look for small polyps in the large bowel.
Polyps in themselves are not cancerous. However if polyps are not removed they can sometimes develop into cancer. The polyps are usually removed in the same procedure and are sometimes sent away for a biopsy. Most people report that they find the test more embarrassing than uncomfortable. However, having a bowel cancer screening test should never be a source of embarrassment but rather a source of reassurance.
The results from the polyps’ biopsy take around two weeks. In the majority of cases they are harmless. In around 1 in 300 cases the bowel cancer screening test will detect cancer. In this instance you will be referred to the appropriate cancer specialist. Very occasionally results will be incorrect, giving either a false positive result, which can cause unnecessary anxiety, or a false negative result, which means the cancer has been missed. Always remember that you know your body, and if you have any changes that you are worried about please consult your GP.
Having a bowel cancer screening test may seem scary or embarrassing, but at the Birmingham Bowel Clinic we treat all of our clients with dignity and respect. If you have any concerns over your bowel cancer screening, or other bowel conditions please contact us in confidence on 0845 2417762 or visit our website.
At the Birmingham Bowel Clinic we offer two types of bowel cancer screening test to help prevent cancer. The traditional FOB Faecal Occult Blood test – see further information on this test here, and the more modern bowel scope screening.