Early Screening For Early Treatment

Colon health is not a topic that we like to talk about…not with friends and especially not with doctors. As we age cancer screenings are encouraged, but who wants to have a colonoscopy? It is easy avoid or delay colon health screenings, but research shows how dangerous that can be.

Colon cancer is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancer among men and women in the United States. It is also one of the only cancers with a reliable screening tool, yet it is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths. If you are asking yourself how there can be so many colon cancer related deaths if there is a reliable screening tool, the answer is: you have to get screened early to be treated early.

A recent study shows that up to 90% of colon cancers could be cured if found and treated in early stages. Later stages of colon cancer at diagnosis may require more extensive surgeries which have greater risks and longer healing times, chemotherapy and radiation therapy as possible treatments. Once cancer has metastasized, or spread to a different part of the body, it is much harder to treat.

Talk with your doctor about your lifestyle, personal and family health history to determine when your colon health screenings should begin. Those people with a higher risk of colon cancer may be encouraged to start screening at a younger age or repeat tests at closer intervals than the average person. If you have any symptoms of colon cancer such as changes in your bowel movements, blood in your stool, persistent abdominal pain or unexplained weight loss, talk to your doctor right away. Don’t avoid screenings and place your life at risk. If you are over 50 or are at high risk for colon cancer talk to your doctor at Vanguard Gastro about screenings today.