Diagram of colon

At-Home Colon Cancer Kits – Do They Work?

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Colon cancer takes the lives of 50,000 Americans each year. Being responsible for your health and being honest with your doctor can be vital. Colon cancer screening can be awkward and uncomfortable – but with at-home test kits, it is now possible to take the test in the comfort of your own home. 

The big question is, do at home detection kits work? Given the option is still new, education is crucial as you look to make a decision on which route is right for you.

What Are At-Home Detection Kits?

First, you want to make sure you educate yourself on how to check for colon cancer at home. The home screening test is designed to analyze your stool samples to check for changes that could be linked to the growth of polyps or other signs of cancer. 

You will collect your stool sample and seal it in the pot provided before sending it off for testing at the lab. The process your stool will go through is called Cologuard. The kits are easy to use and can be ordered and collected from your doctor’s office. 

Pros and Cons

With anything related to health, it is imperative to outweigh the pros and cons before choosing an option. Home colon cancer screening has several aspects to take into consideration. 

Pros:

  • Non-invasive
  • No embarrassment
  • No need to prep/change your diet
  • FDA approved
  • Will detect cancer or polyps
  • Results are clear
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • Only people with an average risk for colorectal cancer can use
  • Waiting can be stressful 
  • Potential user error
  • No emotional/medical support from a doctor
  • Abnormal results result in colonoscopy
  • Needs to be done yearly
  • Doesn’t check the entire colon

The Verdict

At home, colon cancer screening tests are certainly useful, especially if you are overwhelmed going into doctor’s offices or show possible signs of colon cancer. Doing a yearly at-home stool DNA test rather than a colonoscopy may help people stay responsible for their overall health. 

It is important to recognize this test’s limitations, despite its convenience. Colon and rectum cancers are a serious health issue, so it can be important to pick the best option, not the most comfortable. Getting a colonoscopy done by a doctor remains the most thorough solution. It helps ensure that you gain the help of a licensed medical professional, with no potential user errors. 

Schedule an Appointment with NVSCC

If handling at-home screening for colorectal cancer isn’t for you, schedule an appointment with the experienced doctors at Nevada Surgery and Cancer Center. Our oncologists have extensive expertise in cancer treatments. We provide our patients with cancer prevention through our genetic testing and counseling to provide a full understanding of their chances of developing cancer.