Colorectal cancer screening is one of the most important and widely used screening tests in the country, and for good reason. A screening test is designed to discover potentially dangerous diseases or conditions before any symptoms manifest, unlike diagnostic tests, which are a way to determine what condition or disease ails a patient after the patient is symptomatic. Colorectal cancer screening is particularly important because successful cancer treatment rates rise dramatically the sooner it is diagnosed.

The Advantage of Screening

According to the CDC, colorectal cancer develops from what are called precancerous polyps, or abnormal growths, in the colon or rectum. The screening process can detect these polyps, which are harmless before they become cancer, and thus prevent future problems. Once cancer has developed, it can be difficult to treat effectively, so catching it before it develops is essential to your health and well-being.

When Should I Consider Colorectal Cancer Screening?

The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force strongly recommends that screening begin at age 50, and continues regularly after that time, as adults aged 50 and older are the most likely group to develop these precancerous polyps. Many people do not realize that screening is important even when there is not a familial history of colorectal cancer developing–although for individuals with family history of gastrointestinal disorders, this sort of preventative screening is even more vital. The Task Force further recommends that adults aged 76 to 85 who have not ever received a colorectal cancer screening to do so, as even a single screening procedure is likely to give important information that can guide future treatment for that individual.

In fact, many physicians have been encouraged to increase education about the benefits of screening. Digestive Care Physicians is well aware of the great potential benefits and peace of mind that comes from screening tests, and we pride ourselves on our concern for our patients and their well-being. As the old adage goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and with today’s less intrusive testing methodologies, there are exciting new ways to provide that “ounce of prevention” to avoid more concerning diseases or conditions down the line. Consider the benefits of a colorectal cancer screening today.

Digestive Care Physicians is a fast-growing and enthusiastic provider of care for our patient’s digestive health. With four physicians and a PA on staff and four locations in Johns Creek, Alpharetta, Cumming, and Dawsonville, we are excited to provide top quality medical care and advice to patients in Roswell, Duluth, Canton, Suwanee, Sandy Springs, Marietta, and beyond. Now is a perfect time to schedule an appointment. Don’t hesitate to give Digestive Care Physicians a call or email or schedule a visit today.

This article discusses medical and health issues, and is not written to or intended to take the place of medical advice. If you have a question or concern about your health, contact a physician or other health care professional.