Letter: Get screened for colorectal cancer

To the editor:

America is making progress in the fight against colorectal cancer; however, it still remains the third leading cause of cancer death among both men and women in the United States. Even here in our community, colorectal cancer disrupts and ends more lives than necessary. Effective screening and prevention methods are readily available. As a member of this community and a provider at SVMC Gastroenterology, I would like to encourage my friends and neighbors to get screened.

There are a few things that may help our community members make the important decision to get screened. First, simply aging can put you at higher risk for developing colon cancer. Second, early stage colon cancer doesn't usually cause symptoms. By the time you realize something is wrong, the cancer may be advanced. By getting a colonoscopy, doctors can find and remove hidden growths (called polyps) before they become cancer. In addition, colon cancer screening can catch colon cancer in a more treatable stage.

During National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month this March, I hope members of our community will become more aware of the need to get screened for colorectal cancer. Once you turn 50, talk to your doctor about getting screened. Talk to your doctor sooner if you have a family history of the disease or another condition that puts you at risk. Colorectal cancer is preventable, treatable, and beatable.


— Stephanie Sauer, APRN, FNP-BC, SVMC Gastroenterology



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