Learn how age, diet, family history, potential symptoms and other factors can influence colorectal health. Here's what to watch for.
50 or Older
If you’re 50 years or older, a colonoscopy could save your life — because this routine screening can stop colorectal cancer before it starts. In addition, people whose family history includes colon cancer should consider screening prior to age 50. Other risk factors are smoking, excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, poor diet habits, physical inactivity, obesity and Type 2 Diabetes.
Symptoms of Colon Trouble
Because colorectal cancer often does not exhibit any symptoms, it’s important to schedule a colonoscopy that can find and remove small pre-cancerous growths in the colon and rectum (called adenomatous polyps). If removed early, these will not develop into cancer.
If symptoms do occur, they can include:
- Gastrointestinal bleeding (possible obstruction)
- Unexpected change in bowel habits
- Presence of an unexplained abdominal mass
- Abdominal pain and cramping
- Weight loss
- Unexplained anemia
- Constant or frequent diarrhea, constipation or feeling that your bowel doesn’t empty completely
- Blood in your stool or stool that looks black
- Stool that is narrow (as a pencil)
Many insurances offer coverage for most common age specific screening tests,
including colonoscopies. Please consult with your insurance provider if you have
questions about coverage.
Call today! Either Fort HealthCare Surgical Associates at (920) 563-7900 or Fort HealthCare Lake Mills Clinic at (920) 648-7683 to schedule your colonoscopy, and look forward to many more healthy years. Peace of mind never felt so good.