The Importance of Routine Colon Cancer Screenings
Colorectal cancer is cancer that starts in the colon or rectum, which occurs when cells in the colon or rectum divide uncontrollably. For many forms of colorectal cancer, getting routines screenings is an effective form of prevention and early detection.
Why is Screening Necessary?
For both men and women, colorectal cancer is the third most common type of non-skin cancer. Most cases of colorectal cancer develop from precancerous polyps in the colon or rectum. Polyps are abnormal growths that can be removed before they turn into cancer. Screening is important because it can help with early detection of the disease, making cancer treatments more effective.
Know Your Risk
About 5% of men and 4% of women will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer in their lifetimes, making it essential to understand your risk of developing chronic disease. Some risk factors include:
- Age: The risk of developing colorectal cancer increases with age.
- Sex: Men are about 30% more likely to develop colorectal cancer than women.
- Race/Ethnicity: Colorectal cancer is the most common amongst non-Hispanic black people and the least common in Asian and Pacific Islanders.
When to Start Screenings
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), people of average risk should begin colorectal cancer screenings soon after they turn 50 up until they turn 75. However, in other instances, it may be necessary to begin screening earlier:
- You or an immediate family member has had polyps or colorectal cancer
- You have an inflammatory bowel disease
- You have a genetic syndrome like Lynch syndrome
Primary and Specialty Care in Henry County
At Henry County Hospital, we’ve been providing compassionate healthcare since 1919. When it comes to primary and specialty care, each patient can expect individualized care that meets their needs. From education to emotional support, we focus on your individual health and wellness.