· Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in Utah for both men and women.
· There are no early warning signs of colorectal cancer. Symptoms usually occur late in the disease.
· In 2010, 65.7% of Utah adults aged 50+ had a colonoscopy/sigmoidoscopy in the past 10 years or an FOBT in the last year.
· At least 75% of colorectal cancers occur in those with no family or personal history of the disease.
· If found early, survival for colon cancer is 92%. If not, survival is 8%
· About 9 out of 10 people diagnosed with colorectal cancer are at least 50 years old.
· Men and women aged 50 and older should get a colonoscopy every 10 years, a sigmoidoscopy every 5 years, or a Fecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT) every year.
· A colonoscopy is the most effective way to detect colorectal cancer. This can prevent cancer by removing abnormal growths before they become cancer.
· Colon cancer is thought to begin as a small polyp that grows into a large tumor over time. Therefore, removing polyps during a colonoscopy can easily prevent these from growing into a cancer.
· If you have a 1st degree relative who has had colon cancer, then you maybe a higher risk for getting colon cancer and you may need to have a colonoscopy before the age of 50.
· As required by the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance plans cover colonoscopies and other preventative services at no charge to the patient.
· The links between diet, weight, exercise, and colorectal cancer risk are some of the strongest for any type of cancer.
· Diets high in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains have been linked with a decreased risk of colorectal cancer.
· To decrease your risk of colon cancer, avoid smoking and heavy alcohol use.
For more information, please call (800) 717-1811 or visit: http://www.cancerutah.org.