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Colon Cancer: Separating Myths from Facts

Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in the United States, but it is very treatable—and even preventable—with early diagnosis and regular screenings. Unfortunately, myths about the disease often prevent people from getting the care they need. Don’t let misinformation about colon cancer compromise your health. Schedule a screening with a physician at Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center, and keep these facts behind common colon cancer myths in mind.

Myth: You Only Need To Be Screened if You Have Symptoms

Colon cancer screening should be part of everyone’s preventative healthcare regime. Most people should start having screenings by age 50, but your doctor may recommend earlier screenings if you have a family history of the disease. When you get screened for colon cancer, your doctor can find the disease in its early stages, when it is most treatable, or may find pre-cancerous polyps that can be removed, preventing cancer from ever developing.

Myth: I Would Know if I Had Colon Cancer

Colon cancer often doesn’t cause any symptoms at all when it is in its early stages. Pre-cancerous polyps are also asymptomatic. Colon cancer may cause a change in bowel movements, abdominal distension, unexplained weight loss, and rectal bleeding, however, these symptoms usually appear when the disease has progressed. Colon cancer could be present in your body long before you experience your first symptom.

Myth: Colon Cancer Can’t Be Treated

Colon cancer is a very treatable type of cancer, especially when it is caught in early stages. Because colon cancer tends to grow slowly, many patients can be treated with surgery to remove the affected part of the colon. When the disease has progressed, chemotherapy and other treatments may be combined with surgery. Colon cancer screenings and early diagnoses have helped the rate of deaths from the disease decline.

Don’t put off life-saving colon cancer screenings. Talk to your Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center physician about your needs for cancer screening based on your health history. You can learn more about all of our Las Vegas hospital services, including stroke care, our maternity hospital, and orthopedic surgery, by calling (702) 880-2700.

Categories: Cancer Care