A study looking at whether testing poo for blood can show who might be at risk of cancer of the stomach or bowel

Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.

Cancer type:

Anal cancer
Bowel (colorectal) cancer
Colon cancer
Rectal cancer
Stomach cancer





This study is for people who have a low level of red blood cells (anaemia) caused by a lack of iron in the body (iron deficiency anaemia).

More about this trial

A low level of red blood cells in the body is called anaemia. There are different types of anaemia. A common type is iron deficiency anaemia (IDA).

Iron deficiency anaemia can sometimes be a sign of stomach cancer and bowel cancer. So you usually see a specialist doctor and have tests such as an endoscopy to look for abnormal areas or bleeding.

In this study doctors are testing a small amount of poo (faeces) for blood. This is called a faecal occult blood test (FOB). This has been used for many years but it was not always reliable because certain medicines, food and drinks could affect the result.

This test has been improved with the use of faecal immunochemical testing (FIT). FIT only detects blood. Medicines and food do not interfere with the test. So it tends to be more accurate. Doctors think it can help to tell who is at risk of having cancer of the stomach or bowel. This could help them decide who needs to have an urgent endoscopy.

The main aim of this trial is to find out whether the FIT test can help to find out how many people with IDA have:

  • a bleeding wound
  • a gastro intestinal cancer
  • bowel cancer

Who can enter

You may be able to join this study if all of the following apply:

  • You are going to be seen at the Poole iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) clinic
  • You are at least 18 years old

You cannot join this study if:

  • You can’t do the FOB test for any reason
  • You don’t want to have any tests to find the cause of your anaemia

Trial design

The researchers need about 120 people who are going to Poole Hospital to take part.

You do the FOB test before you have the endoscopy. You do it at home with a testing kit.

You place a small sample of poo on a special card and send it to the study team in a prepaid envelope.

Hospital visits

You don’t have any extra visits as part of this study. You do the FOB test at home.

Side effects

There are no side effects associated with taking part in this study.

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Dr Jonathon Snook

Supported by

Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:


Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Over 60,000 cancer patients enrolled on clinical trials in the UK last year.

Last reviewed:

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