30 Oct

What is a FIT test (Faecal Immunochemical Test)?

FIT stands for Faecal Immunochemical Test. Like the guaiac Faecal Occult Blood Test (gFOBt) that is currently used in the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme, this test is used to detect blood in the stool that is not visible to the eye (‘hidden blood’). Growths in the bowel, called ‘polyps’ or ‘adenomas’ can lead to small amounts of blood being lost in the stool as hidden blood. Bowel polyps are common and are not cancer, but they can develop into cancer over time so they are removed if they are found. Bowel cancer can also cause blood to be lost in the stool. The FIT kit is used to look for hidden blood in stool to determine whether an individual needs further examination, which can enable the removal of bowel polyps and identify bowel cancers at an early stage when they are much more likely to be successfully treated. The FIT kit can be sent in the post, is simple to do and can be completed at home.