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Colorectal Cancer
Feeling Lucky this St. Patrick's Day?Lucky Hat
You and Your Colon are Luckier than You Think
Almost fifty years ago something wonderful happened that would prove lucky for every child then alive. Sliced bread? Nope. Polio vaccine? Wrong again. In 1969 colonoscopies were first used to search for colorectal cancers and polyps. By the time kindergartners of the time reached middle age, this test would be part of routine cancer screening for everyone over the age of fifty.

Though we may feel a bit down on our luck the evening prior to our colonoscopies, we are in fact very fortunate to have access to this life-saving procedure. More than 50,000 Americans die from colon cancer each year. Of cancers that affect both men and women, it is the second leading cause of cancer death; being outdone only by lung cancer. This is a particular shame as the majority of colon cancers develop from polyps over the course of many years. Removing pre-cancerous polyps during colonoscopy prevents this progression. Likewise diagnosing and treating cancers in their early stages can be lifesaving.

So, for those of you turning fifty this year, it's time to start colorectal cancer screening. This Saint Patrick's day pick up the phone and ask your doctor about scheduling a colonoscopy. For more information, click here or on the links below.

Tests for Colorectal Cancer
Symptoms of Colon Cancer
General Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Detailed Information from Medline Plus
Screening Tests with Pictures from the National Cancer Institute
Paying for Screening Tests in NY State


Updated 3/8/16