Cancer Screening & Prevention

What is colon and rectal cancer screening?

Colon and rectal cancer (colorectal) is a cancer involving lower digestive tract including the large intestine and rectum. It is the third most common cancer diagnosed in the United States and is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths. Colorectal cancer develops from small growths in the colon and rectum called polyps. These polyps can be found and removed before ever becoming cancerous. Colorectal cancer can be prevented by adhering to appropriate screening guidelines.


What are the risks of developing colorectal cancer?

• Age
• Family History
• Ulcerative Colitis
• Crohn’s Disease
• Hereditary Cancer Syndromes
• Previous Radiation Therapy
• Obesity
• Diabetes
• Tobacco use
• Excessive Alcohol use
• Diet
• Lack of physical activity


Who should be screened for colorectal cancer?

For average risk patients, the current recommendations are to be screened starting at the age of 45 to 50. The American Cancer Society recently published new recommendations to lower the screening age to 45 years old for average risk patients due to an increase in colorectal cancer being found in young adults. Certain individual risk factors may require that you start being screened sooner. Your doctor can help you determine if screening is necessary based on your individual risk.


What screening tests are available for colorectal cancer prevention?

There are many different screening tests available to prevent colorectal cancer. These include colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, CT colonography (virtual colonoscopy) and various stool tests. There are advantages and disadvantages to each type of screening modality which your doctor can review with you to decide which option is best for you. Our dedicated team will work with you to ensure that the appropriate screening tests are performed.


The information provided above is meant to be used as an informative guide for patients. For precise and individualized recommendations, please consult with one of our board certified gastroenterologists to discuss your symptoms.

For additional information or to book an appointment at the Gastroenterology Center of New York, please feel free to reach out to our dedicated team by calling us at 718-210-2960. You can also schedule online or reach out to us via the Contact Us form.

Questions? Our staff is always happy to assist.
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