Colon cancer is preventable

GHP-3849What if you could prevent cancer? The good news is colon cancer may be prevented or cured if detected early with regular screenings.

The bad news is many people don’t take advantage of life-saving screenings.

Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the nation, with the mortality rate in Kentucky among the highest, killing nearly 900 people each year. Colon cancer rates in our region are higher than the national average.

Are you at risk?

People with colon polyps or early-stage colon cancer often have no symptoms. For that reason, the American Cancer Society recommends that adults 50 and older should be screened with colonoscopy. Screenings should start at 40 if you have a family history of colon cancer or polyps.

A colonoscopy is a procedure that allows your doctor to look at the inner lining of your colon. It helps find colon polyps, tumors and areas of inflammation or bleeding. During a colonoscopy, tissue samples can be collected and abnormal growths can be taken out.

Risk factors associated with colon cancer include family history, diet low in vegetables, excessive alcohol use, tobacco use, obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. Colon cancer symptoms include rectal bleeding, change in bowel frequency or stool size, unexplained anemia or weight loss, fatigue, persistent abdominal pain and frequent vomiting.

The Incredible Colon

You have the unique opportunity to see what a healthy colon looks like, and how polyps and cancer form, during The Incredible Colon community exhibit 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 26, in the atrium of Doctors Office Building 2 at Baptist Health Paducah.

The Incredible Colon is a 20-foot inflatable, interactive and educational exhibit that provides visitors with an opportunity to learn about colon cancer, including risks, prevention, early detection and treatment. Free screening kits will be available for the first 200 visitors assessed to have high risk for colon cancer.

If you have questions about colon cancer or colonoscopy, phone Baptist Health Line at 270.575.2918.

–        Oncologist Charles Winker, MD

About Baptist Health Paducah

Baptist Health Paducah is a regional medical and referral center, serving about 200,000 patients a year from four states. With more than 1,800 employees and 200 physicians, it offers a full range of services, including cardiac and cancer care, diagnostic imaging, women’s and children’s services, surgery, emergency treatment, rehabilitation and more. Since its humble beginning in 1953, Baptist Health Paducah has grown from 117 beds to 349 beds on a campus covering eight square blocks.
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One Response to Colon cancer is preventable

  1. Reblogged this on Baptist Health For You and commented:
    Great post on how you can help prevent colon cancer from Baptist Health Paducah.

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