Q&A: What to Expect From Cologuard

Jan 20, 2023

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What is Cologuard?

Cologuard is an at home, non-invasive colon cancer screening test. The test uses advanced stool DNA technology to detect the DNA and blood cells released from altered cells and can detect both precancer and cancer.

Who is Cologuard for?

Cologuard is for men and women 45 years of age and older who are at average risk for colon cancer. Cologuard is not a replacement for colonoscopy in high risk individuals.

How do I complete the Cologuard collection kit?

Unlike a colonoscopy, there is no preparation required. At your convenience, a Cologuard collection kit will be shipped directly to you. You will have a bowel movement into the container provided in the kit. You will also collect a small sample of that stool and put it in a vial. The kit will come with instructions for how to mail your samples to the lab. Plan to collect the stool sample when you can get the kit back to UPS the same day or next day.

How soon will my results be available and what can I expect as a follow-up?

Test results are usually sent to your healthcare provider or telemedicine provider within two weeks.

If you receive a positive result, that does not confirm the presence of cancer. Patients with a positive test result should follow up with their doctor to schedule a colonoscopy.

If you receive a negative test result, you should talk to you doctor about when you need to be tested again. Typically, Cologuard colon cancer screening tests are recommended every three years. Is

Is Cologuard covered by insurance?

Most insurance plans cover this service. Check with your insurance company or doctor’s office about your coverage.