Head2Toe

Half a Million Cancers Prevented by Colon Screenings: Study

Health News / Tips & Trends / Celebrity Health

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TUESDAY, June 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) — More than 500,000 cases of colon and rectal cancer may have been prevented with cancer screening tests during the last three decades in the United States, experts estimate.

“These numbers represent real patients and families who have been spared the trauma of a cancer diagnosis and treatment,” the study’s senior author, Dr. James Yu, assistant professor of therapeutic radiology at Yale School of Medicine, said in a university news release. “Colorectal cancer screening is one of the major successes in cancer care.”

The screenings, which took place between 1976 and 2009, included three kinds of tests: colonoscopy; a similar test called a sigmoidoscopy; and fecal occult blood tests, in which fecal samples are tested by a laboratory for signs of blood in the stool. As an increasing number of men and women underwent these procedures, colon and rectal cancer rates dropped dramatically, the…

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