Colon Cancer Awareness


Colon cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death in men and women combined in the United States, yet it doesn’t have to be. In fact, it’s one of the few cancers that is preventable through screening.


March Is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month!

Established in 2000, this monthlong campaign spotlights colorectal cancer (CRC) and promotes the research, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and, ultimately, cure for this disease.

Did you know?

CRC is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S. This cancer of the colon and rectum begins as polyps. Although they may begin as benign in the colon, they can become cancerous and spread. This type of cancer is preventable through timely screenings — so don’t wait for symptoms.

Get screened at 45.

Experts say about 10.5 percent of new CRC cases occur in people younger than 50. If you are 45, it’s time to schedule your colonoscopy, and tell your friends and family to do the same! (Note: If you have a family history of the disease, you may need to be screened earlier. Talk to your doctor.)

Colonoscopy is the only screening option that can detect and prevent colorectal cancer. Most insurance plans provide coverage for a screening colonoscopy for patients 45 and older. Call your health insurance company to confirm you are eligible for a screening colonoscopy.

When CRC is found at an early stage before it has spread to other organs, the five-year relative survival rate is about 90 percent.

Get involved.

If you are not a part of the screening demographic yet, help promote the message to get screened and stop colon cancer now! Here are a few ways you can get involved:

  • Donate money to a group that supports colorectal cancer awareness.
  • Wear a blue ribbon/shirt on March 3, Dress in Blue Day.
  • Talk with friends and family members about the importance of getting their first screening at age 45 (or earlier, depending on family history).
  • Join a fundraiser for a nonprofit or charitable group focused on colorectal cancer education/research.
  • Host an educational seminar at your local church, office or nonprofit group.
  • Ask past patients/survivors and past caregivers to share their story with your group/organization.
  • Reach out to a local media outlet to discuss the disease and prevention on air or in an article/editorial.

Need more information? Click below for additional resources.

Colorectal Cancer Facts

Second-leading cause of cancer death in the United States

Early-onset colorectal cancer (diagnosis before turning 45) is on the rise

Only 20% of colorectal diagnoses can be attributed to family history


Chance of getting colorectal cancer in your lifetime: 5% or about 1 in 20


African Americans are at higher risk of colorectal cancer

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