It’s easier than ever to manage your colon health – including the prevention of colon cancer.
Screening early and regularly, whether you’re at high risk or not, will enable your physician to find colon cancer in its earliest stages and when it is most treatable. The proactive removal of pre-cancerous polyps can even prevent cancer from developing in the first place.
Screening through colonoscopy is used to:
- Determine the cause of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding or a change in bowel habits
- Take tissue samples for testing
- Stop intestinal bleeding
- Monitor your response to treatment if you have inflammatory bowel disease
Do I Need Colonoscopy for Cancer Screening?
Colon cancer is the third leading type of cancer and the third leading cause of cancer deaths, which is why at Cape Cod Healthcare, we recommend everyone gets screened, whether or not you have a family history of the disease.
For the general population, we advise colon cancer screening for men and women by age 50, and subsequent screenings every 10 years until age 75.
You may need to get screened earlier or more frequently than the recommended guidelines if:
- You or a close relative have had colorectal polyps or colorectal cancer
- You have inflammatory bowel disease
- You have genetic syndromes such as familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) or hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer
Speak with your doctor about when screening is right for you.
Alongside colonoscopy screening, Cape Cod Healthcare physicians are trained, skilled and experienced in endoscopy procedures. An endoscope is an instrument that has a tiny camera attached to a long, thin tube. During endoscopy procedures, the doctor moves it through a body passageway or opening to see inside an organ.
Some types of endoscopes are used to screen for cancer in people who have no symptoms. For example, colonoscopy and sigmoidoscopy are used to screen for colon and rectal cancer. These procedures can also help prevent cancer because they let doctors find and remove polyps that might become cancer if left alone.
For information on the endoscopy location most convenient and suitable for your health needs, ask your doctor or healthcare provider.