Across Dorset, a test called the FIT test; that is used to rule out possible bowel cancer, is not being returned by some of the people that doctors have given it to.

This is a test that can detect possible bowel cancer before it becomes harder to treat. We want to raise awareness of the importance of this test, and how you can complete it, if your doctor has asked you to.

Bowel Cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK. About 43,000 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year. If it is detected early, treatment is more successful and there is a good chance of recovery. It is important that you go to your doctor, with any signs or symptoms so they can help to rule out bowel cancer.

The FIT (Faecal Immunochemical Test) is a test that looks for blood in a sample of your poo. It looks for tiny traces of blood that you might not be able to see and which could be a sign of cancer. Traces of blood in your poo can be caused by other medical conditions and doesn’t mean you have cancer.

If you go to see your GP, they might ask you to carry out this test as part of the investigation for your symptoms. The FIT results help your doctor decide whether to refer you for more tests. The test could be given to you by the GP, or it may also arrive in the post, once it has been decided this is a test you need to do. It is really important that you return it to your GP surgery, as soon as possible, after you receive it.

The following video provides a guide about how to complete and return your FIT kit. If you need any further advice or support, please let your doctor know so they can support you to get the right tests.