As part of national health observances that are spread out throughout the year, the month of March has been designated as Colon Cancer Awareness Month. Colorectal cancer is responsible for an estimated 50,000 deaths each year. But thanks to increased colon cancer awareness efforts, the death rate has been dropping steadily since the 1980s.
Screening for colon and colorectal cancer is recommended beginning at age 50. However, colon cancer can occur at any age. If you’re younger than 50 and think you may be at high risk of getting colorectal cancer, ask your doctor if you should be screened.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), facts surrounding colon and colorectal cancer include:
- Among cancers that affect both men and women, colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.
- Every year, about 140,000 people in the United States get colorectal cancer, and more than 50,000 people die of it.
- Risk increases with age. More than 90% of colorectal cancers occur in people who are 50 years old or older.
- Precancerous polyps and colorectal cancer don’t always cause symptoms, especially at first. If you have symptoms, they may include blood in or on the stool, stomach pain that doesn’t go away, or losing weight and you don’t know why. If you have any of these symptoms, see your doctor.
- There are several screening test options. Talk with your doctor about which is right for you.
- Only about two-thirds of adults in the United States are up-to-date with colorectal cancer screening.
Virtual CT Colonography screening service
CT colonography is an option to consider to screen for colon cancer. Capitol Imaging Services recommends discussing colon cancer screening options with your doctor or medical provider to determine whether CT colonography is a viable option for you.
A screening Virtual CT Colonography is covered by most health insurance plans, with the exception of Medicare and Managed Medicare plans. The age requirement to undergo this screening is 50 years of age or above.