Tuesday, 14 August, 2018

New screening recommendations for colorectal cancer

New screening recommendations for colorectal cancer New screening recommendations for colorectal cancer
Anna Jefferson | 03 June, 2018, 01:31

On Wednesday, the American Cancer Society updated its guidelines for colorectal cancer screenings.

The ACS lowered the age to 45 because of data showing new cases of colorectal cancer occurring at an increasing rate among younger adults.

Dr. Cedrek McFadden is a physician with GHS.

"Insurers should recognize the new American Cancer Society Colorectal Cancer Screening Guidelines and provide full coverage for virtual colonoscopy and the other ACS-recommended screening exams for beneficiaries ages 45 and older", Yee said in the same statement. Some factors that categorize a person as high risk include a strong family of colorectal cancer and a personal history of inflammatory bowel disease.

"If we find it in later stages, survival is less than 20%", McFadden explained. "Most times a polyp or a cancer lesion will start growing without really giving you any symptoms like blood in your stool which is the most common symptom".

The cancer society says that lowering the age of screening to 45 should help the populations that are at higher than normal risk as well as others of average risk.

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The updated guidelines include six test options, ranging from non-invasive to colonoscopies. United States Latinos are more likely to die from the disease than those in many Central and South American countries.

The change ... is not based on the results of a new clinical trial but rather modeling studies based on increasing prevalence of colorectal cancer among U.S. adults in their 40s.

A screening for colon or rectal cancer isn't always a colonoscopy, though that is usually needed if another type of test indicates a problem. In addition, African Americans and Latinos in the USA are less likely to get screened, which may contribute to their higher mortality rate. "So it's preventative, not just early diagnosis", she said, adding that she thinks the risks of screening younger outweigh the benefits.

"We're deeply concerned about this trend", says Dr. Richard Wender of the American Cancer Society.

The American Cancer Society endorses six kinds of screening exams, from affordable take-home stool tests performed every year to colonoscopies done every 10 years.

Another option is a multitarget stool DNA test, which is done every three years and involves collecting a sample at home and sending it in. "The benefits of extending the start-screening age by 5 years, even if they exist, pale compared to the potential benefits of getting more people in the universally agreed-upon age range screened". But based on the ways colon and rectal cancers have started to affect younger people, the ACS determined that such a change is still important to recommend.

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