POSTED: Tuesday, March 6, 2012 - 2:45pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, March 6, 2012 - 2:49pm
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — Colon cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. But when detected and treated in the earliest stage, colon cancer patients have a 90 percent chance of survival.
The Louisiana Endoscopy Center is participating in a national effort to screen 1,000 first-time patients for colon cancer during National Colon Cancer Screening Day on Thursday, March 8.
It’s the center’s goal to help raise awareness by encouraging anyone 50 or older to get screened.
“Almost 40 percent of Americans at risk for colon cancer are not getting screened,” said Dr. Robert Be of Louisiana Endoscopy Center. “By designating a national screening day, we hope to raise awareness among first-time patients and break down the barriers associated with the procedure. It’s an easy call to make and the message is clear; a colonoscopy can save your life.”
Colonoscopy is the most effective method of screening for colon cancer. During the procedure, precancerous polyps can be detected and removed before they develop into cancer, making a colonoscopy the only test that allows both diagnosis and treatment at the same time. Colonoscopy can also find cancer at its earliest stage, when treatment works best.