HCA Neighborhood Health Watch: Colon cancer screening

HCA Neighborhood Health Watch: Colon cancer screening

(WWBT) - Who gets excited about having a colonoscopy or the bowel prep that goes with it? Probably no one. That's why the topic today in Neighborhood Health Watch is colon cancer screening.

It's important testing to look for cancer before any symptoms start. Doctors say it can help save lives.

With regular screening, colorectal cancer is preventable and curable with early detection. The logic behind cancer screening is finding the cancer early, when its small and easier to treat.

Dr. Peter Miller with Henrico Doctors' Hospital Colon and Rectal Specialists says despite a 90 percent cure rate, there are still many people who are fearful of getting a screening.

"It's gotten such a bad rap with prep and drinking and everything, and cleaning out the night before, but there are reduced volume preps and other things we can do to make people more comfortable," said Dr. Miller.

NBC12 asked if there are other colon cancer screening options besides the colonoscopy, and are they as reliable?

"That's a good question. The cologuard is a test in which doctors can look for specific cells. You send off a stool sample. But, colonoscopy is really the gold standard, because you can find and treat at the same time, whereas the cologuard, you can only find, and then you have to get a colonoscopy if it's a positive test."

Save this date: Monday, March 26. The public is invited to a Colon Cancer Seminar at Libbie Mill Library from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. It's free and open to the public, so bring your questions and the doctors at the Colon Cancer Seminar will answer them.

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