March is colorectal cancer awareness month highlighting the number three cause of death from cancer in the United States. Vigilance for signs of bowel cancer should begin at age 50 with a colonoscopy. If there is a family history of colorectal cancer these examinations should begin sooner. All adults should have annual stool guiac testing (a test for blood in stool) as part of a general physical exam.
A recent Healthy Rounds interview with Dr. David Coletti, a general surgeon at the William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich, CT, revealed the importance adequately preparing the colon for any procedure including endoscopic colonoscopy, radiologic imaging of the colon or colorectal surgery. Careful cleansing of the colon before the procedure, as outlined in the written instructions, will directly increase the ability to find a cancerous growth and remove it without complication.
If you have any helpful hints regarding preparation for colonoscopy please share them.
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