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  • Colon Cancer: Reduce Your Risk

  • Too embarrassed to get tested?
     
    The number one reason colon cancer goes undetected until the advanced stage is embarrassment. Studies have shown a majority of Americans feel uncomfortable about discussing potential symptoms of colon cancer with their doctor. Nobody said medical exams are fun, but they are a necessity in detecting colon cancer early.

    Statistics show that when colon cancer is found and treated in its early stage, the five-year survival rate is 90 percent. The American Cancer Society predicts that the number of colon cancer deaths could drop by half if all Americans were routinely tested.

    What's the best test?
    The technology for medical testing has evolved tremendously. There are a number of ways to test for colon cancer. Decide with your doctor which test best suits you.

    Tests offered for colon cancer detection include:

    • Colonoscopy
    • Sigmoidoscopy
    • Fecal occult blood testing
    • Double contrast barium enema

    Gastroenterologists suggest that a colonoscopy is the most effective way to test for colon cancer.

    No matter which test you choose, doctors say rectal bleeding, blood in the stool, a change in bowel habits and cramping in the lower abdomen are all signs to get medical attention.