Doctor offers prevention tips during Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Published: Mar. 3, 2023 at 4:53 PM CST
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CHIPPEWA FALLS, Wis. (WEAU) - March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, colorectal cancer is the second leading cancer killer in the U.S.

They say sometimes abnormal growths, called polyps, form in the colon or rectum. Over time, some polyps may turn into cancer.

A doctor with HSHS St. Joesph’s Hospital in Chippewa Falls says that while at home tests such as Cologuard are useful in identifying if there is an issue, a full colonoscopy is recommended, so any existing issues can be dealt with.

He says the recommended age for a colonoscopy has gone down.

“Age 45 now for asymptomatic people with no family history and formerly 50. We want to reach people before they develop symptoms, before there may be an advanced tumor,” Dr. Jon Potter, Gastrointestinal Specialist, said.

Dr. Potter says some symptoms that people experience when dealing with colorectal cancer include bleeding and weight loss.

He recommends talking with your primary health care provider if you have these symptoms.