A study to find who needs to be screened for bowel cancer

Coronavirus and cancer

We know it’s a worrying time for people with cancer, we have information to help. If you have symptoms of cancer contact your doctor.

Read our information about coronavirus and cancer

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

Cancer type:

Bowel (colorectal) cancer





This study is looking at finding who is at risk of bowel cancer and needs a colonoscopy. It is also looking at people with a risk of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). 

The people taking part in this study have already provided a poo (stool) sample and have been asked by their doctor to have a colonoscopy. It is for people going to the NHS Tayside colorectal service.  

More about this trial

If you have bowel problems, such as diarrhoea, bleeding from the back passage and tummy pain your GP will want you to have some tests. The main test is a colonoscopy. But it can be difficult to know who needs to have this test and who doesn’t.

One way to look for bowel cancer is by testing a small amount of poo (faeces Open a glossary item) for blood. This is called faecal immunochemical test for haemoglobin (FIT).

If the results show there is blood in your poo, you have a colonoscopy. But most people who have blood in their poo don’t have bowel cancer.

In this study, researchers want to see if factors such as

  • age
  • weight
  • gender
  • lifestyle

can be used, with the FIT results, to help decide who needs a colonoscopy and who can avoid having one. 

Who can enter

The following bullet points list the entry conditions for this study. Talk to your doctor or the study team if you are unsure about any of these. They will be able to advise you.

You may be able to join this study if you are going to the NHS Tayside colorectal service and all of the following apply

  • Your doctor has asked you to have a colonoscopy
  • You have had a FIT test 
  • You have had a blood test to check the number of red cells, white cells and platelets (full blood count) – doctors usually ask for this test before a colonoscopy
  • You are at least 16 years old

You cannot join this study if you are not able to have a colonoscopy for any reason. 

Trial design

The researchers need about 4000 people who are having a colonoscopy at the Tayside colorectal service to take part.

Everyone completes a questionnaire before their colonoscopy. It takes about 10 minutes to complete. You can have help to complete this if you need it.

The questionnaire asks

  • what you eat
  • how much physical activity you do
  • if you have diabetes Open a glossary item
  • if you have problems with your bowels
  • whether you take any medication
  • if you smoke or drink alcohol
  • if you have family members with bowel problems

All the answers you give and the information collected about you is kept confidential Open a glossary item. It will not change any treatment you might need.

The researchers look at the answers, the results of the colonoscopy and the results of the blood and FIT test. They want to see if this information can show who is at a risk of bowel cancer and would need to have a colonoscopy.

Hospital visits

You don’t have any extra visits as part of this study. Your colonoscopy will be done as part of your normal care. 

Side effects

There are no side effects associated with taking part in this study but you might have some side effects from the colonoscopy.

We have information about having a colonoscopy

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

Professor Robert JC Steele

Supported by

Chief Scientist Office (CSO)
NHS Tayside
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer
University of Dunde


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.

Alan took part in a clinical trial for bowel cancer patients

A picture of ALan

“I think it’s essential that people keep signing up to these type of trials to push research forward.”

Last reviewed:

Rate this page:

No votes yet
Thank you!
We've recently made some changes to the site, tell us what you think