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March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month

Doctor and patient
Digital Vision, ThinkStock

The month of March is Colon Cancer Awareness month, and can serve as a reminder for people over 50 to get tested.

The American Cancer Society is reminding people, especially those over 50-years-old, that colon cancer is the 3rd most common type of cancer diagnosed in both men and women, and is the 3rd leading cause in cancer-death in both men and women.  Colorectal cancer will kill an estimated 50,310 people in the U.S. in 2014, including an estimated 90 in Wyoming.

“Ninety percent of colon cancer cases occur in people over the age of 50,” says Shane Ferraro, a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society.  “But fewer people are getting screened when they need to.  So we could greatly impact the number of survivors; catch that cancer earlier; or prevent it, even; if people were to get their colonoscopies when they should.”

Information sent by the ACS shows that colorectal cancer is one of two types of cancer that can be completely prevented by screening, the other being cervical cancer.

“About one-in-three adults, age 50 and older, who fit into those screening recommendations, are not getting screened,” Ferraro says.  “If we can get those people to get screened, when they should, we could greatly reduce the number of colon cancer diagnoses.”

For more information and guidance on colorectal cancer, visit their website or call the American Cancer Society (24 hours a day, seven days a week) at 800-227-2345.

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