Healthy Living: New guidelines say to get your colon checked around age 45
If you’re in your mid-40s and haven’t had your colon checked, it might be time. New guidelines published this week say the increase in colorectal cancer-related deaths among your people is alarming enough to push the age for screenings up five years.
The American Cancer Society has changed its recommendations for the age when you should start getting colorectal cancer screenings. They now suggest starting those screenings at age 45 instead of 50.
Rising rates of colon cancer and deaths in younger adults have driven the need for updated guidelines. But those at a higher risk, including African Americans, Alaska Natives and people with family or personal history, should consult with their doctors.
The updated guidelines include six test options, ranging from non-invasive to colonoscopies.
According to the World Health Organizations, colorectal cancer, which includes both colon and rectal cancers, is the second leading cause of death in the U.S. for cancers that affect both men and women.
Doctors believe rising obesity rates, more sedentary lifestyles and diets high in processed foods are contributing factors to the increase in colorectal cancer.
KUSI was joined by Dr. Samuel Eisenstein, a colorectal surgeon at UC San Diego Health & the Moore’s Cancer Center, with more on the importance of early detection.