Colon cancer, or colorectal cancer, is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. Luckily, colon cancer can often be prevented or detected early with proper screening. For your gastroenterology needs in the greater New York, NY area, Dr. Daniel Alpert and his team are among the best and will be sure to make your care their top priority.
When Should You Start Screening For Colon Cancer
Generally speaking, you’ll want to start screening for colon cancer at age 45. However, if you have a family history of colon cancer it would behoove you to begin talking to your medical provider earlier to develop a screening treatment plan. The most common type of screening used by a medical professional is a colonoscopy. During a colonoscopy, a gastroenterologist will use a special scope to look inside your colon for polyps or evidence of cancer. If a polyp is located it will be removed and sent to a lab for further examination. For more information, contact Dr. Alpert at his New York, NY office to schedule an appointment.
Who Is At Risk of Colon Cancer?
Anyone with a parent, sibling, or child that has been diagnosed with colon cancer is at greater risk of having it themselves. Additional risk factors include the following:
- Family or personal history of polyps
- Family history of Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and inflammatory bowel disease
- Physical inactivity
- Tobacco usage
- Increased alcohol consumption
- Patients with a known history of other cancers including breast, ovarian, and uterine
How to Reduce Risk of Being Diagnosed with Colon Cancer
The best way to reduce the likelihood of being diagnosed with colon cancer is to be screened early and often - particularly if you have a family history of colon problems. Other prevention methods include maintaining a healthy weight, regular exercise, consumption of a healthy diet, and stopping the use of tobacco products.
If you are suffering from colon-related issues or are due for a screening, please contact Dr. Alpert’s office in New York, NY at 212-599-7910 to schedule an appointment.