By Andrew Spiegel
Colon Cancer Alliance
One of the keys to eradicating colon cancer is awareness. Being aware of risk factors, symptoms, family history and screening options will not only help in fighting the disease itself, but could mean the difference between life and death.
Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. A lot of work has gone into bringing awareness to this disease, but because it deals with part of the body that the general public is uncomfortable talking about, many suffer needlessly.
The stigma associated with this cancer still looms large. Colon cancer kills nearly 50,000 Americans yearly and almost 150,000 new cases of colon or rectal cancer will be diagnosed this year, according to the American Cancer Society.
A screening test such as a colonoscopy is a preventative measure that works. When you turn 50, get screened. If you have risk factors such as a family history of the disease, talk to your doctor. You may need to be screened earlier. The results are undeniable. Screening can reduce your risk of developing colon cancer by up to 80%. Colon cancer is one of the most preventable and curable cancers… if it’s caught early. Colon cancer doesn’t discriminate. It affects everyone, no matter your race or gender.
The Colon Cancer Alliance has developed a variety of local and national programs to help bring greater awareness to this disease. Our efforts are getting people talking and that’s a first step to making colon cancer a thing of the past.