FENTON, Mo. – Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in the U.S. and leading cause of death, mostly due to the lack of symptoms.
That is why a doctor like Dr. Ralph Silverman, a surgeon at SSM Health St. Clare Hospital in Fenton, talks as much as he can about getting the recommended screenings for colon cancer. He says colorectal cancer affects people in every demographic and is most often found in patients ages 45 and over.
In the United States, the screening guidelines recently changed from age 50 to age 45 for colonoscopy.
“If you have a colonoscopy at age 45, and it’s normal, and you have no family history of polyps or colon cancer, then you can have your next colonoscopy be in 10 years,” Silvermand said.
“If, however, you find polyps at that colonoscopy at 45 years of age, or if you have a family history, then you’re gonna go every three to five years to have that colonoscopy.”
Should you be one of the nearly 130,000 new cases diagnosed every year, Silverman says SSM Health provides personalized colorectal treatment options. The good news about screening, he says, is, “colon cancer in general is a very beatable… a very beatable disease,” if caught early.
SSM Health has a ReVital Cancer Rehabilitation program with extensive training for each therapist to give patient’s information and understanding of the unique challenges they may face while going through treatment.
“It’s really concentrating on everything outside of the cancer, focusing on the person to get them through this rather difficult portion of their life,” he said.
To learn more about Colorectal Cancer and screenings, click here.
The SSM Health Medical Minute airs Wednesdays on News 11 at 7 p.m. and FOX 2 News at 9 p.m.