Is 50 early enough for CRC screening from a gastroenterologist in Brooklyn, NY?
We’ve all heard about the importance of, starting when we turn 50, receiving a colonoscopy to detect any early signs of cancer. What some doctors are beginning to see is that there are signs that this may not be early enough due to the higher rate of cancer diagnosis being seen in patients who are waiting between the age of 49 and 50 to receive colorectal cancer (CRC) screening. Dr. Alexander Shapsis and his team at Atlantic Gastroenterology are digestive health experts operating out of a state-of-the-art clinic in Brooklyn, NY who are spreading the word regarding the importance of CRC screening in patients.
Is 50 Early Enough?
Historically, it’s been advised that patients begin to receive routine, average-risk screening for colorectal cancer starting at the age of 50. Over the last several years, the increase in incidence of colorectal cancer in those receiving their first screenings has seen a sharp increase. This has led medical professionals to consider that this deadly cancer is going undetected in younger patients for several years leading up to their first CRC screenings.
A Sharp Increase
In a recent study conducted by the GI Hereditary Cancer and Genetics Program at the Tulane University School of Medicine, incidences of colorectal cancer in 49 to 50-year-old patients being screened (considered the 2nd deadliest form of cancer) saw a sharp increase of 46 percent . This steep increase was not seen in any single demographic either. These findings were seen across the board including all regions. men, women, black and white populations. This is truly a concern that has some medical professionals wondering if a change in the recommended age of CRC screening needs to occur.
The Danger of Colorectal Cancer
Colorectal cancer is currently listed as the 4th most diagnosed cancer in the United States. Recent statistics posted by the American Cancer Society show that, each year, there are around 135,000 colon cancer diagnosis and around 50,000 deaths resulting from the disease. The good news is that recent treatments have proven to be successful, allowing higher survival rates.
People are also taking CRC screening more seriously than ever before. Around 70 percent of adults in the United States between the age of 50 and 75 were up to date with their screenings in 2018. This is up 1.4 percent from previous years. It’s a great sign that more and more people are taking this disease seriously and it’s resulting in more lives saved.
While findings have shown that it may serve you well to not wait until you hit that magic age of 50 for your first CRC screening, no official change in the recommended age has yet occurred. Regardless of your age, if you are concerned about colorectal cancer and need to be screened, please call Dr. Alexander Shapsis and his team at Atlantic Gastroenterology at 718 521-2840 today for an appointment.
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