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Colorectal Cancer: 2nd Most Common Cancer in Wisconsin

March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. You may have seen ads in magazines or on social media depicting an upside-down heart with the text “love your colon”. It’s a clever way to draw people’s attention to a major cancer killer in our country that can sometimes get “overshadowed” by well marketed issues like heart disease (which is, in fact, the leading cause of death in the United States, absolutely validating all the attention it receives.)   img-home-heart

However,  you should know that of cancers affecting both men and women, colorectal cancer (cancer of the colon and rectum) is the second leading cancer killer in the United States and the second most common cancer in Wisconsin. What’s unfortunate about that statistic, is that this can be prevented by receiving regular screenings starting at age 50.  Screening can help find precancerous polyps—abnormal growths in the colon or rectum—so they can be removed before turning into cancer. Screening also helps find colorectal cancer at an early stage, when treatment often leads to a cure.

If you are 50 years old or older, it’s time to schedule an appointment and get screened. If you think you may be at higher than average risk for colorectal cancer (in general people over the age of 50 are at the highest risk. You may also have a higher risk if you are African American, smoke, or have a family history of colorectal cancer), talk to your doctor about getting screened early.

Want more information on why colon cancer is such a big deal? Get educated today so you can be healthy tomorrow.

Check out the helpful infographic on colon cancer in Wisconsin, courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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