March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
The American Cancer Society has announced that March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.
Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers in both men and women. The risk of colorectal cancer goes up as we age. More than 90 percent of cases are diagnosed in people age 50 or older. Colorectal cancer is one of the few cancers that can be prevented through early detection testing. Early detection tests can also help find colorectal cancers when they’re small and easier to treat.
If patients get screened (tested) regularly – before they have symptoms – growths in the colon (called polyps) can be found and removed before they have the chance to turn into cancer.
The American Cancer Society recommends that men and women at average risk start colorectal cancer screening at age 50. Some people may be at higher risk based on their family health history and need to start testing earlier. Ask your doctor when you should start screening for colorectal cancer and which test is right for you.
Currently, millions of people who should be screened for colorectal cancer are not getting the recommended tests. To help reduce those numbers, 500-plus organizations, including the American Cancer Society and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), are working together to increase the percentage of people getting screened for colorectal cancer in the United States to 80 percent by 2018.
To learn more about what you can do to prevent colorectal cancer and all cancers, visit www.cancer.org or call the American Cancer Society at 800-227-2345.