Is it time to get screened?
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer and cancer death in the United States, leading to more than 50,000 deaths every year. Unfortunately, precancerous colon polyps and even early colon cancers frequently do not cause symptoms—until it’s too late!
How can you reduce your risk of colon cancer?
- Lose weight
- Be physically active
- Don’t drink to excess and quit smoking right away
- Get your screening colonoscopy
Colonoscopy is the best available test for colorectal cancer screening, and remains the only test which allows for both detection and removal of precancerous colon polyps from the entire colon.
While the 2018 American Cancer Society guidelines recommend beginning screening at age 45, our care approach thus far is consistent with American college of Gastroenterology guidelines, which is to begin screening at age 50.
Some people should get screened at a younger age:
- Those with a family history of colon cancer
- People with worrisome signs and symptoms
- Blood in your bowel movements
- Pain in your abdomen -Unexplained weight loss
Talk to your doctor about scheduling a screening colonoscopy—it’s the right thing to do and it could save your life!
Mark Mallory, MD