Colorectal (Colon) Cancer Screening


Colorectal cancer is a cancer that begins in the colon or the rectum. These cancers can also be named colon cancer or rectal cancer, depending on where they start. Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in the U.S., but it is highly preventable. When detected early, colorectal cancer has a survival rate of more than 90%.

The best way to detect and prevent colorectal cancer is by scheduling a colonoscopy. During a colonoscopy, a gastroenterologist uses a colonoscope to examine linining of the colon for polyps. If polyps are found, they can be removed, often before they become cancerous. A colonoscopy is an outpatient procedure lasting less than an hour. 

Colonoscopy is the gold standard for colorectal cancer screening. It is the only screening test that detects and prevents colon cancer. In addition, it is the only suitable test for people with risk factors like family history of colon cancer. 

Adults who are at average risk for colorectal cancer should schedule a colonoscopy at age 50. African-Americans and those with a family history should begin screening earlier. 
 
Through September of 2019, SDG physicians average a 50% adenoma (pre-cancerous) polyp detection rate during a colonoscopy. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, for every 1% increase in a physician's adenoma detection rate, there is a 3% decrease in a patient's odds of developing colon cancer over the next decade. The national adenoma polyp detection rate benchmark is 29%. 

To learn more about colon cancer, symptoms and the importance of colonoscopy, download the PDFs below. To schedule a colonoscopy call 303-788-8888.