Bowel Cancer Australia recommends screening for bowel cancer every one to two years for both men and women:
- Over the age of 50
- With no bowel cancer symptoms
- No personal/family history of bowel cancer or polyps.
People experiencing symptoms or who have a personal/family history of bowel cancer or polyps are advised to discuss appropriate screening options with their GP.
Signs and symptoms of bowel cancer
Bowel cancer can develop with few, if any, early warning signs. If symptoms of the disease are present, these may include:
- Blood in or on the stool (faeces) – please note that polyps and cancers may bleed intermittently
- A recent and persistent change in bowel habit
- General stomach discomfort
- Frequent gas or pains
- Unexplained weight loss.
If you have any of these symptoms, please discuss them with your GP.