November 01, 2021

Colorectal cancer screening

More tests, more choices

Colon cancer is the top cancer killer in nonsmokers. Yet, it's considered a preventable disease thanks to several cancer screening options. Learn about the options and take advantage of their lifesaving benefits.

Colorectal cancer screening

When it comes to comparing the many tests available for colorectal cancer screening, most doctors agree on one thing: The best test is the one you'll actually complete.

Colorectal cancer is considered a preventable disease, mostly because screening is so effective. Nevertheless, about one-third of those who should be screened for colorectal cancer are not up to date, according to the American Cancer Society.

Some are turned off by the discomfort and time required for the most frequently recommended screening method, the colonoscopy. Some people simply don't have the access to the health care that they need.

This has driven researchers to develop new screening tests that are more convenient, more comfortable and don't involve an invasive medical procedure. In addition, some recommendations now suggest that those at average risk begin screening at 45 years of age, five years earlier than previous guidance.

It all adds up to significant changes in the best way to prevent you from developing colon cancer.

Cancer screening

With colonoscopy, precancerous polyps can be removed, preventing the development of colon cancer.

 

Nipping colon cancer in the bud

The colon — also called the large intestine or large bowel — is about 5 feet long and forms a sort of squared-off question mark beneath the liver and stomach, ending with the rectum. When colon cancer develops, it can become apparent with a change in...