Fewer than four in ten men in Glasgow’s most deprived areas are taking up screening for bowel cancer according to the latest statistics.

Greater Glasgow has the lowest uptake for screening in Scotland but in the poorer communities it is even lower.

Just over half of people in the Greater Glasgow NHS area who were offered a test in the last year took up the offer.

At 51% it is the lowest of the 14 health boards and lower than the 55.5% across Scotland.

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Men are less likely than women to take up a screening test with 48% of males compared to 54% of women getting screened in Glasgow.

The numbers drop considerably when deprivation is taken into account.

In the most deprived communities the rate of men taking a test falls to just 39% compared to just under 60% in the least deprived parts of the city.

For women the pattern is similar with 43% in the most deprived areas getting tested and 66% in the least deprived areas.

If bowel cancer is detected early there is good chance of survival with those spitted and treated at the earliest stages having a 90% chance of surviving.

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The figures show that Glasgow has higher than average rate of people with a positive screening.

There are 2.4% of positive tests in the city region compared to 2.07% across Scotland and more men than women are tested positive.

Cancer charities are hoping that the take up rate will start to get better.

Gregor McNie, Cancer Research UK’s head of external affairs in Scotland, said: “Screening is important as it’s the best way to diagnose bowel cancer at an early stage when treatment is more likely to be effective.

“While these figures confirm that, in the last few years, the number of people in Scotland taking up the offer of bowel screening isn’t as high as we’d like to see, we hope this is about to change.

“A new test, called FIT, was introduced in Scotland in November. It’s likely that this will lead to more people returning the test as it’s easier to complete.”