Top 45 Reasons to Get a Colon Cancer Screening at Age 45

Rachel Morrell

GI Doctor Comforts Patient

On May 30, 2018, the American Cancer Society lowered the recommended age for colon screenings from age 50 to age 45.

Earlier colon screenings may sound like a punishment, but consider this fact: since 1994, colon and rectal cancer rates among adults under the age of 50 has increased by 51 percent. Whether it’s due to poor diet, sedentary lifestyle or environmental factors, young-onset colon cancer is steadily increasing. Younger individuals are more likely to be diagnosed with advanced-stage colon cancer and have poorer outcomes. The logical conclusion seems simple: get screened earlier.

If you are 45 years old, you probably aren’t very excited about your sudden need to schedule a colonoscopy, so we want to encourage you by giving you Stop Colon Cancer Now’s Top 45 Reasons to Get Screened at Age 45:

  1. Colon cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer death in the United States.
  2. Your lifetime risk for colon cancer is about 1 in 20.
  3. Most cases of colon cancer are preventable through routine screenings.
  4. Colon cancer is over 90 percent treatable when discovered in the early stages.
  5. Colon cancer can be hereditary, so it is essential to get screened as early as your doctor suggests.
  6. Early screening helps you become more familiar with the warning signs and risk factors for colon cancer.
  7. You have many choices in colon screenings: colonoscopy, flexible sigmoidoscopy, barium enema, fecal occult blood test (FOBT), fecal immunochemical test (FIT).
  8. All colon screenings are fully-covered under the Affordable Care Act.
  9. Colonoscopy is the gold standard of colon screenings because it can remove precancerous polyps and prevent colon cancer.
  10. You can select the most qualified gastroenterologist by knowing the right questions to ask. Use our Colonoscopy: Ensuring the Quality of Your Procedure page as a resource.
  11. You don’t have to scour the internet to get answers to your colonoscopy questions. Check out our Colonoscopy: Myth vs. Fact article.
  12. We can even help you with the colonoscopy prep basics. Take a look at our Types of Colon Prep and Colonoscopy Prep Tips.
  13. Colonoscopy sedation fees are also covered under Medicare and private insurance.
  14. Colonoscopy now has a split-dose method that allows you to drink half of the bowel prep on the evening before the exam and the other half on the morning of the exam.
  15. The fasting day before a colonoscopy is not as bad as you think. You can have treats like popsicles, Jell-O, gummy bears and Italian ice!
  16. A colonoscopy typically lasts only 15-30 minutes.
  17. You can get your colonoscopy results on the same day of the exam, shortly after you wake up from your procedure.
  18. Even if your doctor finds a polyp during a colonoscopy, the procedure is still fully covered.
  19. Following your colonoscopy, you can eat whatever you want. Food never tasted so good!
  20. A colonoscopy allows you to spend some quality time with a loved one. You’ll need a ride home from the procedure, so ask a special friend or family member to be your caregiver.
  21. After your colonoscopy, you get to go home and relax. You can return to work the next day, so enjoy your day off!
  22. You can resume your regular activities the day after your colonoscopy.
  23. Colonoscopies are more invasive than other screenings, but they offer the best in colon cancer prevention.
  24. Most people admit that their colonoscopy was not as bad as they expected.
  25. Colonoscopies do not just detect colon cancer. They can identify diverticulitis and other chronic bowel conditions.
  26. A colonoscopy offers a glimpse of your overall health.
  27. Most screening colonoscopies only have to be repeated every 10 years.
  28. Your initial test doesn’t have to be a colonoscopy. You can even choose an at-home stool test with a prescription from your doctor.
  29. Some insurance companies are covering stool testing for patients under the age of 50.
  30. Even if your insurance company is not currently paying for early screenings, you can purchase a stool test for as little as $20.
  31. Fecal occult blood testing (FOBT) and fecal immunochemical testing (FIT) are other examples of non-invasive screenings.
  32. Stool tests have to be repeated at shorter intervals, but they can be effective screening tools for people who are at average risk for colon cancer.
  33. Stool tests have a powerful purpose. A positive result indicates a need for a colonoscopy.
  34. Home stool tests like Cologuard are an easy, inexpensive screening option.
  35. Gastroenterologists admit that the best test is the test that gets done. In other words, choose a screening method and take action.
  36. Developing a relationship with a gastroenterologist at a young age will help ensure that you get screened at the correct intervals.
  37. Our Colon Cancer Prevention FAQ page is a one-stop resource for all your pre-screening questions.
  38. Stop Colon Cancer Now has lots of resources to help you get ready for a colon screening under the Tools You Can Use tab.
  39. If you need a little confidence boost before your first colon screening, you can read the personal accounts on our Testimonial page.
  40. An earlier screening gives you an excuse to check out our Video Bank with informative interviews and silly music videos.
  41. You can feel 100 percent prepared for your colonoscopy by watching our 5-part video series: Keeping Up With the Kolonoscopy.
  42. You can easily find a colon cancer screening center by clicking here and selecting your state.
  43. Colon-healthy living includes eating a well-balanced diet, so build your menu using the recipes on the Butt Seriously Blog.
  44. The Butt Seriously Blog also has Prevention Info and Healthy Living Tips to encourage you in your digestive health.
  45. Between 60 and 90 percent of cancer deaths could be prevented if adults over 50 had regular colonoscopy screenings. Think of how these statistics could improve if everyone over 45 had a colonoscopy!

If you’re 45, count yourself fortunate! It’s time to schedule a life-saving screening procedure. By getting regular colon cancer screenings, you’ll be well on your way to living another 45 years.

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