Common questions on colorectal cancer screening
What is colorectal cancer screening?
Colorectum is the last portion of the digestive system. It consists of the colon, the rectum and the anus. Colorectal cancer is one of the commonest cancers in Hong Kong, and it is ranked as the second fatal cancer in the city. The purpose of colorectal cancer screening is to identify people who have colorectal cancer before they have any symptoms so doctors can commence treatment earlier.
You can consult a doctor to assess your medical fitness for joining the Colorectal Cancer Screening Programme. You will be given a participant’s pack with the FOBT tubes. Sampling only has to be done at home, and the collected specimen should then be returned to the listed collection points. You will be notified of the result.
Our clinic has joined the Colorectal Cancer Screening Programme, and Hong Kong residents, who are asymptomatic, between the age of 50 to 75 with valid HKID are now eligible for the programme at no cost. Please feel free to make an appointment with our doctors to discuss your concerns so we can help optimise your health.
Early colorectal cancer may bleed and cause blood to be mixed in the stool. Faecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT) may detect small amounts of blood in stool even if it is not visible to the naked eye. FOBT is a non-invasive and safe test. If the FOBT result is positive, you will need to be further assessed by colonoscopy. When polyps are found, they will be removed for analysis. Removal of polyps also reduces the chance of them becoming cancerous.
Hong Kong government recommends individuals aged 50 to 75 to discuss with their doctor and consider screening for colorectal cancer.
Screening can detect cancer earlier, which may lead to higher rates of successful treatment. Successful treatment may prevent the progression of cancer, and treatment for early-stage cancer may be mild and lead to fewer side effects.