6 August 2018 Blog Post: Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer (cancer that starts in the colon or rectum) is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death in men and women combined in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates that this year 95,520 people will be diagnosed with colon cancer, 39,910 will be diagnosed with rectal cancer, and 50,260 will die from this disease.
 
One of the concerning trends in colon and rectal rates is that there has been an increase in cases among younger age groups while declining rates have been observed in older age groups,. The proportion of cases diagnosed in individuals younger than age 50 increased from 6% in 1990 to 11% in 2013.
 
Based on these findings and revised national screening guidelines, patients @santamonicaprimarycare aged 45 and older coming in for their annual preventive examination will have a highly sensitive fecal immunochemical test (FIT) every year and/or a referral for colonoscopy. This is a change from years prior when this testing and discussion occurred at age 50.
 
You may have read this week that diet soda can reduce the risk of colon cancer returning.
There are a number of inherent design limitations in this study that make it difficult to recommend diet soda intake. It is important to note too that the study looked at colon cancer recurrence, not prevention of colon cancer in the first place. (The fact that it was performed at Yale Cancer Center doesn’t make it any less flawed, all due respect to Yale University).
 
The best advice for reducing your risk of colon cancer is from the American Cancer Society:
1. Get screened.
2. Eat lots of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.
3. Get regular exercise.
4. Watch your weight.
5. Don’t smoke.
6. Limit alcohol (2 drinks a day for men, 1 for women. A single drink amounts to 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine or 1½ ounces of 80-proof hard liquor because I knew you were going to ask. And, no, you can’t store up a credit from a 6 days of not drinking and have them all on one night).

𝗦𝗶𝗴𝗻 𝗨𝗽 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗢𝘂𝗿 𝗡𝗲𝘄𝘀𝗹𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲𝗿

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