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Colorectal Cancer Screening Saves Lives

Monday October 14, 2019

Of cancers that affect both men and women, colorectal cancer is the second leading cancer killer in the United States, but it doesn’t have to be.

The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency urges residents to save their lives by talking to their doctor about preventative screening. “Screening can find precancerous polyps—abnormal growths in the colon or rectum—that can be removed before they turn into cancer,” says Yvonne Atwood, Director of Personal Health and Disease Prevention. “Screening also helps find colorectal cancer at an early stage, when treatment works best.” About nine out of every 10 people whose colorectal cancers are found early and treated appropriately are still alive five years later.

Your risk of getting colorectal cancer increases as you get older. More than 90% of cases occur in people who are 50 years old or older. Other risk factors include having:

Lifestyle factors that may contribute to an increased risk of colorectal cancer include:

Colorectal cancer screening saves lives. If you think you may be at increased risk for colorectal cancer, speak with your doctor about when to begin screening, which test is right for you, and how often to get tested.