It’s Time to Schedule Your Screening during National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month! This monthlong campaign spotlights colorectal cancer (CRC) and promotes the research, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and, ultimately, cure for this disease.
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.
When doctors find CRC at an early stage before it has spread to other organs, treatment is less extensive and the five-year relative survival rate is about 90 percent. So don’t wait for symptoms.
Are you 45 or older?
Colorectal cancer rates have been increasing in adults younger than 50.
Reports estimate about 49 new cases of CRC occur in people younger than 50 every day. That’s 18,000 people per year.
One in five CRC patients is between 20 and 54 years old.
Colorectal cancer is now the No. 1 cause of cancer death in men and the second-leading cause of cancer death in women younger than 50, according to new data released in mid-January by the American Cancer Society.
Screenings save lives.
Colorectal cancer is preventable through timely screenings; however, many people make excuses about why not to get this life-saving procedure.
Due to the increase of colorectal cancer diagnoses in younger adults, screening is key to survival. Colonoscopy is the only screening option that can detect and prevent colorectal cancer.
If you are 45 or older and at average risk, it is time to stop making excuses and schedule a colonoscopy cancer screening. Tell your friends and family to do the same!
(Note: If you have a family history of CRC, you may need to be screened earlier. Talk to your doctor.)
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.
Support the campaign.
To recognize the importance of Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, we encourage you to wear a blue ribbon/shirt on March 1, Dress in Blue Day, and throughout March.
Other ways to get involved:
- Donate money to a group or organization that supports colorectal cancer awareness.
- If friends and family members make excuses, talk to them 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.
If you are not a part of the screening demographic yet, you can help promote the message to get screened and stop colon cancer now!