As many as one third of Americans may forego a colonoscopy because they consider it embarrassing or uncomfortable. Home stool tests could provide a different type of detection for colorectal cancer.
A study in The New England Journal of Medicine suggests that a new DNA stool test is more accurate than the older fecal immunochemical or FIT stool tests that are commercially available. Comparisons of the DNA test and the FIT test to colonoscopy showed that 154 individuals would need to be screened to detect one cancer with colonoscopy; 166 need to be screened to detect a single colon cancer with the DNA test and 208 individuals would need to be screened with FIT to detect one such cancer.
The bottom line seems to be that newer multi-target DNA stool tests can be helpful in early detection, but colonoscopies remain the gold standard.