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Ignoring Public Health Guidance: The Rising Threat of Bowel Cancer in Under-50s

man holds side of stomach in pain

76% of at-risk Brits aged 55 and over have never screened for bowel issues, despite the NHS providing free screenings for those aged 60 to 74, new research has revealed.

The study conducted by Newfoundland Diagnostics uncovers a shocking lack of concern around bowel health, with 20 million Brits admitting they don’t care.

This includes 1 in 4 under 45-year-olds stating they don’t care about their bowel health – even as UK bowel cancer death rates are forecast to rise by a third among under-50s thanks to rising rates of obesity, poor diets and an increase in alcohol consumption.

In more alarming findings, 49 million Brits can’t recognise the symptoms of bowel cancer, with only 1 in 4 able to identify the key warning signs.

This knowledge gap is particularly concerning given that over 50% of bowel cancer cases are preventable.

To get the nation testing, Newfoundland Diagnostics is offering free Bowel Health tests (RRP: £10.00 for one test) this Bowel Cancer Awareness Month with any test purchased throughout April.

Frederick Manduca, co-founder of Newfoundland Diagnostics, said: “These findings reveal there remains a substantial amount of ignorance when it comes to bowel health.

It’s a topic that people might find slightly embarrassing to discuss, but it’s crucial that we’re all able to detect and understand symptoms of bowel health issues. 

“Early diagnosis has a significant impact on survival chances, which is why we’re determined to put the power back in people’s hands and save lives through early detection. 

“Through simple testing and understanding symptoms, we can all do our part to protect ourselves and educate others.”

Early diagnosis of bowel cancer has a crucial impact on survival chances, with more than 9 in 10 surviving when it’s diagnosed at the earliest stage, compared to only 1 in 10 at the most advanced stage.

To receive your free Bowel Health test, use code BOWELFREE at checkout when purchasing any other health test in April at

When should I test?

If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should consult your GP and consider testing your bowel health:

  • A change in bowel habit
  • Blood in your stool
  • Abdominal pain
  • Unexplained weight loss

How does the test work?

Newfoundland Diagnostics’ Bowel Health test is a faecal immunochemical test (FIT), which detects occult (hidden) blood in your stool. Occult blood can be a sign of precancerous polyps or colorectal cancer. 

Across the UK, the NHS uses FIT in primary care. Access to self-diagnostics, in appropriate risk categories, can significantly enhance the way bowel cancer is prevented, treated and cured.

About Newfoundland Diagnostics’ Bowel Health Test

The Newfoundland Diagnostics Bowel Health Test (RRP: £10.00 for one test) provides results with a >99% accuracy in as little as 5 minutes in the comfort of your own home, aiding Brits in the diagnosis of bowel cancer and other bowel-related issues.

For information on when and how to use the test, please visit