Colorectal Cancer- Preventable, Treatable, Beatable – By Dr. Peter Bossart
Colorectal cancer screening helps people stay well and saves lives.
Regular colorectal cancer testing or colonoscopy is one of the most powerful ways to prevent colorectal cancer or find it early, when it’s small and easier to treat.
Removing polyps can help prevent colorectal cancer from ever starting. Cancers found in an early stage, while they are small and before they have spread, are easier to treat. Most people whose colon cancer is found and treated early will be alive 5 years later. And many will live a normal life span.
Polyps and colorectal cancer rarely cause symptoms. In fact, often symptoms only become evident when the disease is well progressed. That’s why screening is so important…screening helps find precancerous polyps, so they can be removed before they can turn into cancer. So colonoscopy not only detects cancer but can prevent a future cancer from even starting.
Colorectal cancer doesn’t usually cause any noticeable symptoms. In most cases, by the time people do have symptoms the cancer is advanced and very hard to treat. Symptoms include: rectal bleeding, change in bowel habits, diarrhea, constipation and vomiting, weight loss and fatigue, are not normal and need to be evaluated.
When I congratulated our patient ‘Nancy’ for scheduling her colonoscopy in a timely way, her response was, “Are you kidding me…Dr. Bossart saved my life! Please tell your patients -NO sniveling… a colonoscopy is so much easier than radiation and chemotherapy!”