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Colon Cancer Prevention

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Colon cancer prevention facts

  • Colon cancers may be both preventable and, if detected, still curable if found at an early stage and promptly treated.
  • Screening for colon cancer in asymptomatic people is recommended to begin at age 50.
  • Risk factors for colorectal cancers include a family history of colon polyps, genetic factors and certain lifestyle choices.
  • Colonoscopy and flexible sigmoidoscopy may treat and/or prevent colorectal cancers safely and effectively. Colon polyp removal is the most effective way to prevent colon cancer from occuring.
  • The new Cologuard test also may detect early precancerous and/or cancers of the colon safely and effectively, and thus allow invasive colonoscopy to become more of a treatment modality instead of a "test and treat if necessary procedure."
  • Treatments of patients to prevent colorectal cancer that may be effective in some individuals but may have long-term adverse side effects include any NSIAD therapy.
  • The use of two antioxidants, vitamins A and C, are apparently ineffective in reducing the incidence of colorectal cancer.
  • People with hereditary colon cancer syndromes should consider genetic testing
  • Genetic testing and counseling can help determine the possibility of early-onset of colorectal cancers and allow early treatments.
  • Lifestyle changes (high fruit/fiber diet, no smoking, weight loss, screening and genetic testing in some individuals) may help reduce and/or possibly even prevent some people from developing colorectal cancers.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/23/2016



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