By Partha Nandi, MD FACP
Data pulled from WXYZ.com
Colon cancer is a killer! It is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.
However, this can be completely prevented. With simple screening test, colon cancer does not have to be a killer of thousands of folks every year. Screening for colon cancer can be easy and done in 30 minutes.
The best screening test is a colonoscopy. Whenever somebody hears colonoscopy they have misconceptions and ideas and are fearful of this test. Many times I hear “well that’s exit only” or “exit only doc.” Aside from all the jokes, however, this simple test can save your life.
So who should be screened for a colonoscopy? If you’re over 50 should have a colonoscopy. Ask your doctor if you have a family history of colon cancer or have any genetic problems that could increase the risk of colon cancer. If you’re African-American you should start your testing at age 45. Also if you have diseases like Crohn’s disease or Ulcerative Colitis, you may have to start your screening colonoscopies earlier.
So remember to make the decision to save lives. If you, your family member or loved one is over 50 or is at increased risk for colon cancer, talk to your doctor and schedule a colonoscopy. We can eradicate colon cancer!
- Please get screened early. If you diagnose it early, then you can entirely prevent colon cancer or effectively treat it.
- Stop smoking. Smoking can increase your risk for colon cancer.
- Have a diet with less red meat and fat. This can also help you reduce your risk of colon cancer.
- Exercise and maintain a healthy weight.
- Join the American Cancer Society and help the millions of patients prevent colon cancer. Please advocate to increase the coverage of screening for colon cancer in your community. Please visit Cancer.org for more details. You can also contact the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345.
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