Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. for men and women, yet it’s one of the most preventable. If you’re over 50, make an appointment today for a colonoscopy. Click here to request an appointment or call 888-622-6325.
- On average, your risk of developing colon cancer is 1 in 20.
- If a family member has colon cancer, your risk nearly triples.
- 90% of new cases are in people 50 years or older.
- There are currently more than 1,000,000 colon cancer survivors in the U.S.
- Testing is recommended every 10 years.
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a test that allows your doctor to look at the inner lining of your large intestine - the rectum and colon. The physician uses a thin, flexible tube called a colonoscope, with a small camera attached, to look at and take pictures or video of the colon. A colonoscopy helps find ulcers, colon polyps, tumors, and areas of inflammation or bleeding. During a colonoscopy, tissue samples can be collected and abnormal growths can be removed. A colonoscopy can also be used as a screening test to check for cancer or precancerous growths in the colon or rectum.
Accuracy of a colonoscopy is important. The adenomatous polyp detection rate (ADR) is how the quality of a colonoscopy exam is measured. At the MacNeal gastroenterology lab, the polyp detection rate is higher than the national average rates for men and women. The national standard is that a significant polyp should be removed in at least 15% of colonoscopies in women and 25% of colonoscopies in men. Additionally, flat polyps and small polyps are more difficult to see. MacNeal’s gastroenterology lab uses high definition and computer-enhanced endoscopy imaging to improve visibility for difficult polyps and polyp detection.
Who should have a colonoscopy?
Starting at the age of 50, you should have a colonoscopy every 10 years. Your doctor may recommend earlier or more frequent testing if you have a higher risk of colorectal cancer. Talk to your doctor about when you should be tested.