March is Colon Cancer Awareness MonthMarch 14, 2022
Myth #1 – Colon cancer is fatal.
Reality – When detected at an early stage, colon cancer is very treatable with a 90% success rate.
Myth #2 – Colon cancer only affects older adults.
Reality – While it is true that your risk of colon cancer increases with age, it can occur in younger adults & teenagers. In 2018, the American Cancer Society recommended that colon cancer screening starts at age 45, rather than 50, for average-risk individuals. This change was made due to a higher incidence of colon cancer in younger adults.
Myth #3 – Colorectal cancer screening is not covered under most health plans.
Reality – Most commercial health plans cover the cost of a screening colonoscopy. However, if you are getting a colonoscopy for evaluation of symptoms or a history of colon polyps, your exam will be classified as diagnostic. Therefore, copays and deductibles will likely apply.
Myth #4 – A colon polyp means that I have cancer.
Reality – It is true that a polyp can progress to colon cancer. However, if a polyp is detected and removed prior to this progression, you can avoid colon cancer.
Myth #5 –If I don’t have symptoms, I don’t need a colonoscopy.
Reality – Colon cancer is often a “silent” disease. It takes years to grow and by the time symptoms develop it is generally quite advanced and more difficult to treat. This reality is why it is so important to follow colon cancer screening guidelines and your gastroenterologist or primary doctor’s recommendations.
Colon cancer screening can be a life-saving preventative health exam. Talk to your doctor today!