March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Statistics show more than 150,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with colorectal cancer each year.

Here are some important steps you can take for your health:

1. Screening Tests are crucial for early detection: Regular screenings such as colonoscopy, virtual colonoscopy, or flexible sigmoidoscopy aid in early identification of colon polyps or cancer.

2. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle:

– Adopt a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

– Exercise regularly.

– Limit alcohol intake and avoid tobacco products.

3. Know Your Family History: Understand familial medical history, as colorectal cancer can be hereditary. Inform your primary care provider for personalized recommendations.

4. Stay Informed: Be aware of colorectal cancer symptoms and report any unusual symptoms promptly for timely medical attention.

If you are 45 years and older, be sure to make an appointment with your primary care provider to get a colorectal cancer screening.

Sources:

1. MedlinePlus [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US); [updated 2020 Jun 24]. Colorectal Cancer; [created 1999 Feb 26]. Available from: https://medlineplus.gov/colorectalcancer.html

2. MedlinePlus [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US); [updated 2020 Jun 24]. Colonoscopy; [created 2009 Jan 21]. Available from: https://medlineplus.gov/colonoscopy.html

3. Xin J, Du M, Gu D, Jiang K, Wang M, Jin M, Hu Y, Ben S, Chen S, Shao W, Li S, Chu H, Zhu L, Li C, Chen K, Ding K, Zhang Z, Shen H, Wang M, . Risk assessment for colorectal cancer via polygenic risk score and lifestyle exposure: a large-scale association study of East Asian and European populations. Genome Med;2023Jan24; 15 (1) 4. doi:10.1186/s13073-023-01156-9; PMCID:PMC9875451