March is National Colon Cancer Awareness Month, and I definitely wanted to share some facts on the site. Colon cancer didn’t really land on my radar until a couple of years ago when I started experiencing issues with my GI system. I went months without getting treatment because I was uninsured and I practically obsessed about my health situation becoming cancerous. Then, everything went away and the thoughts subsided. Fast forward to late last year, all the health problems resurfaced and I told myself that I no longer had an excuse to postpone the needed doctors (yes, plural) appointments. My gastroenterologist recommended that I have a colonoscopy so that they could properly diagnose my condition, but also ensure that there weren’t any polyps or tumors in my colon. I blogged about my experience over on the American Cancer Society’s Choose You blog.
While my doctor confirmed that I had Crohn’s disease, she also calmed my nerves when she told me that there weren’t any visible polyps and my biopsy results were negative. ALL praises due to God!!! But, ever since then, I’ve been researching colon cancer and learning what I can. The American Cancer Society recently released Colorectal Cancer Facts & Figures 2011-2013, a comprehensive resource with statistics, prevention information, and treatment guidelines. While the public may not discuss colon cancer as often as other cancers, the facts tell us that we should. In both men and women, colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the third leading cause of cancer death.
When it comes to prevention, screenings are KEY. If you’re at risk for the disease (over 50, family history, etc), it’s so important that you work with your physician to get the screenings that you need. Edward Partridge, M.D., national volunteer president of the American Cancer Society, states, “The American Cancer Society has identified colorectal cancer as a major priority because of the enormous potential to prevent the disease, diminish suffering, and save lives.”
You don’t have to tell me twice. I’m committed to doing my part to protect my health and the health of my loved ones…and I challenge you to do the same. Start the process by learning the facts. You can access the comprehensive report here.