Colon Cancer Screening
Nearly 150,000 new cases of colorectal cancer occur every year in the United States alone.
Nearly 150,000 new cases of colorectal cancer occur every year in the United States alone. More than 50,000 people per year die from the disease. After lung cancer, cancer of the rectum or colon (colon cancer) is the most common type of cancer in the USA, and it is at least 80% preventable. Both men and women are affected, almost equally. Our doctors, best in class NYC gastroenterologists Upper East Side and in Midtown Manhattan who commonly screens for colon cancers states that the key to survival is prevention or treatment at an early stage.
While the death rate has been steadily dropping, according to the American Cancer Society, about five percent of the population will develop colorectal cancer.
Screening for Colon CancerExperts believe that increased awareness and colon cancer screening could save about 30,000 lives each year. That’s because preventative colon cancer screening can detect colorectal (colon or rectal) cancer even before you show any symptoms. The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy encourages everyone over 50 — or anyone with a family history of the disease or early polyps — to take the preventative test for colorectal cancer. African Americans should begin screen at 45 years of age.
A colonoscopy is an effective screening examination. Usually performed on an outpatient basis, the procedure typically takes less than 45 minutes, although you’ll be at the doctor’s office for a couple hours for prep and recovery. With a sedative, it’s completely painless.
You are urged to schedule a colonoscopy with a gastroenterologst if you are 50 years old or older, have family members who’ve been diagnosed with colorectal cancer (high risk groups and ethnic background may have different ages to begin screening and different intervals for follow up), or are among those in the risk group or have experienced any of the following symptoms and others causes as identified by your gastroenterologist:
- Blood in your stool (bright red to black)
- Change in bowel habits
- Chronic constipation
- Chronic diarrhea
- Chronic fatigue
- Rectal bleeding
- Unexplained weight loss
Six Questions That Could Save Your Life (or the Life of Someone You Love)
Test your knowledge about colon or rectal cancer (CRC) screening. If you think the answer is true or mostly true, answer TRUE. If you think the answer is false or mostly false, answer FALSE. The answers are at the bottom of the page.
- Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.
- CRC is predominantly a “man’s disease,” affecting predominantly more men than women each year.
- Only women over the age of 50 who are currently experiencing some symptoms or problems should be screened for CRC or polyps.
- The tests for screening for CRC include: a digital rectal exam, a stool blood test, flexible sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy.
- A colonoscopy screening examination typically requires an overnight stay in a hospital.
- Colon cancer is often preventable.
1. TRUE. Nearly 150,000 new cases of CRC are diagnosed in the U.S. every year. About 50,000 people a year die from the disease. If detected early through colonoscopies, CRC can be treated and cured.
2. FALSE. Colorectal cancer affects an equal number of men and women. While many women think CRC is a disease that only affects men, proper screening can save their lives. Early detection is the key.
3. FALSE. Beginning at age 50 (or earlier depending on risk factors), all men and women should be screened for CRC, even if they are not experiencing any symptoms.
4. TRUE. All these tests are used to screen for colorectal cancer even before you have any symptoms. Beginning at age 50 (or earlier if you have a personal or family history of CRC, polyps or long-standing ulcerative colitis), you should have:
5. FALSE. A colonoscopy exam usually is an outpatient procedure. You receive a mild sedative beforehand, and then while you’re relaxing, our doctors gently inserts a colonoscope into your rectum to visually check the lining of your colon. The colonoscope is a thin, flexible tube with a camera and a light on its tip. During the procedure, video from the camera is displayed on a monitor in real time. The procedure is safe and typically takes less than 45 minutes.
6. TRUE. CRC is highly preventable. Colonoscopy may detect polyps (small growths on the lining of your colon). Removing these polyps (by biopsy or snare polypectomy) results in a significantly reduced risk of developing the disease in the future.
Important Reminder: This information is only intended to provide guidance, not definitive medical advice. Please consult a GI doctor about your specific condition. Only trained, experienced colon cancer screening physicians like our doctors can determine an accurate diagnosis and proper treatment.
As best in class NYC gastroenterologists, our doctors provides highly personalized and comprehensive care. Their philosophies regarding the doctor/patient relationship is based on trust and has earned them some of the most respected reputations in NYC.
For more information about colon cancer screening or to schedule a colon cancer screening appointment with the Midtown or Upper East Side NYC GI doctors, please contact our NYC gastroenterology offices.
Gastroenterology Upper East Side
983 Park Ave Ste 1D
New York, NY 10028
+1 (212) 427-8761
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