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NHS Health Check, screenings and vaccinations

Bowel cancer screening

What is bowel screening?

Bowel cancer screening involves having tests to check if you have or are at risk of bowel cancer.

Read the NHS Bowel cancer screening page

Who is the bowel screening for?

NHS bowel cancer screening is only offered to people aged 55 or over, as this is when you're more likely to get bowel cancer:

  • if you're 55, you'll automatically be invited for a one-off bowel scope screening test, if it's available in your area
  • if you're 60 to 74, you'll automatically be invited to do a home testing kit every 2 years
  • if you're 75 or over, you can ask for a home testing kit every 2 years by calling the free bowel cancer screening helpline on 0800 707 60 60

Why have the screening?

Read why to have the bowel cancer screening: Bowel cancer screening: benefits and risks (GOV.UK website, opens in a new window).

How is the screening done?

Read how bowel scope screening is done: Bowel scope screening (NHS website, opens in a new window)

Read how the screening is done at home: Home test (NHS website, opens in a new window).

Easy read:

About bowel cancer

Bowel cancer is a common type of cancer in both men and women. About 1 in 20 people will get it during their lifetime. To learn what the symptoms are visit at NHS Choices - Bowel cancer symptoms (opens in a new window). If you have symptoms of bowel cancer,see your GP immediately.