Did you know that patients say they are most likely to get screened if they hear a strong recommendation from their doctor?
So, please prioritize colorectal cancer screening in your treatment of patients ages 50 to 75.
- Don’t just mention it—strongly recommend that your patients get screened, and follow up to be sure they do.
- Consider sharing this information in your conversations.You can also help spread the work by empowering patients who’ve already been screened to talk about their experience with people they know.
- Download this quick reference guide. It’s a great resource for you and your staff about colorectal cancer screening best practices, screening options, insurance coverage and other resources.
- Please also download and print this flyer and post it in your waiting and exam rooms.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends colorectal cancer screening for all men and women ages 50-75. African American men and women should begin screening at age 45, according to the American College of Gastroenterology. Those with a family history of colorectal cancer should begin screening at age 40.
When I was 38 years old, I was diagnosed with colorectal cancer. Today, I am undergoing treatments and anticipating an upcoming surgery. At the age of 36, my brother went in for a colonoscopy and had precancerous polyps removed. I knew colon cancer was in my family, but I had no idea it would affect me, especially at such a young age.
If you have colon cancer in the family, and have not had your colonoscopy, do not wait for the suggested age of 50 to get screened. Be conscious of any intestinal or bowel abnormality that you might have, such as blood or mucous in the stool, and go get checked immediately. Screening can help catch it early when it is still highly treatable.
Michelle Dennis – Portland