Colon Cancer Awareness Month

March is colon cancer awareness month!

Colorectal cancer is the 2nd leading cancer killer among cancers that affect both men and women. But it doesn’t have to be.

Almost all colorectal cancers (CRC) begin as abnormal growths in the colon or rectum. They can be present for years before invasive cancer develops but early-stage colorectal cancer seldom causes symptoms. That’s why regular screening is imperative.

An American adult has about a six percent chance of developing CRC in his/her lifetime. Most CRC is preventable through regular screening but early detection also helps catch any cancer at more successfully treatable stages. In fact, the five-year survival for stage 1 colon and rectum cancer is 90.1%.

Alarmingly, only 39.4% of CRC cases are diagnosed at the local stage. About one-third of adults aged 50 or older (about 22 million people) have not been screened as recommended.

According to the American College of Physicians (2015), average adults aged 50 to 75 years should be screened for colorectal cancer by one of four methods: annual high-sensitivity stool blood tests (gFOBT or FIT); flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years; high sensitivity gFOBT or FIT every three years plus flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years, or colonoscopy every ten years.

People with a family history of colon cancer or polyps, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or certain genetic or inherited syndromes are at higher risk for CRC and should begin screening earlier than age 50.

The bottom line: talk with your doctor about getting screened and about what method would be best for you. For more information, contact New Day Vitality today.