Look before you flush

BMJ 2003; 326 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.326.7385.397/b (Published 15 February 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;326:397
  1. Mourad Ibrahim Habib (mouradhabib{at}hotmail.com), clinical research fellow
  1. St James's University Hospitals, Leeds LS9 7 TF

    EDITOR—Moayyedi and Ford described recent advances in gastroenterology.1 The national programme for early detection of colon cancer uses the following statement to raise public awareness for early detection of rectal bleeding: “Look at it before you flush it.”

    It is really helpful to make people aware of looking for early signs of colon cancer, but I have noticed some important things that might hinder this national programme.

    The lavatory disinfectants now sold in supermarkets are mostly blue in colour and change water blue, which makes looking for any blood quite difficult. I suggest that we stop selling colouring agents and replace them by colourless ones or even use reagents that turn a certain colour in the presence of minor blood amounts. Can we?


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