Faecal Occult Blood Testing
Faecal occult blood testing checks for blood in the stool and is used in the NHS screening programme every 2 years from the age of 60-69.
At home, you wipe a small sample of your faeces onto a special card, which you then send to the laboratory for testing.
If your result is abnormal we would suggest you have a colonoscopy as 1 out of 10 people with a positive test will have bowel cancer and many of the rest will have polyps.
This test does not pick up all polyps or bowel cancers. Your result may be negative but you could still have polyps or a bowel cancer that was not bleeding when you did the test. If you want an almost certain test we would recommend a colonoscopy.
This test is not suitable for patients with symptoms of bowel cancer.