Early screenings essential to prevent and effectively treat colon cancer

March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

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By Community Editor

COURTESY OF WEST SUBURBAN MEDICAL CENTER 

 

Oak Park, Ill. – Among cancers that affect both men and women, Colorectal Cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every year, about 140,000 Americans are diagnosed with colorectal cancer, and more than 50,000 people die from it.
 
"When detected in the early stages, Colorectal Cancer is a preventable and very curable disease." Kamran Heydarpour, MD, West Suburban Medical Center Gastroenterologist explains.
 
Because there are often no symptoms when it is first developing, colorectal cancer can only be caught early through regular screening, but many people are not being screened according to national guidelines.
 
"Early detection and treatment help us to save lives," Dr. Heydarpour says. "If a patient has already developed symptoms, the possibility of curing the cancer is only 50 percent, but if a patient is regularly screened and begins treatment after the discovery of an early stage colorectal cancer, before symptoms develop, the opportunity to cure it is 80 percent or better."
 
National recommendations indicate patients should begin screening for colorectal cancer soon after turning 50. Several tests are available to screen for colorectal cancer. Some are used alone; others are used in combination with each other. Colonoscopy procedure is the gold standard for colorectal cancer screening.
 
Dr. Heydarpour notes that in addition to getting screened regularly for colorectal cancer, people can lower their risk of getting the disease by:
  • Avoiding foods that are high in fat.
  • Eating plenty of vegetables, fruits and other high-fiber foods.
  • Exercising regularly and maintaining a normal body weight.
  • Not smoking and drinking alcohol only in moderation.
 
To schedule an appointment for a colonoscopy or other colorectal cancer screening, contact West Suburban Medical Center central scheduling at 708-763-6310. A physician's referral may be required.
 
Celebrating its 100-year anniversary in 2014, West Suburban Medical Center is a 233-bed teaching hospital located in Oak Park that is accredited by The Joint Commission. The hospital offers a comprehensive array of advanced inpatient, outpatient and surgical services and is a leaders in orthopedics, gastroenterology, oncology, cardiology, obstetrics, and rehabilitative medicine. West Suburban Medical Center is owned by Tenet Healthcare Corporation, a leading health care services company, which through its subsidiaries operates 77 acute care hospitals, 187 outpatient centers and Conifer Health Solutions, a leader in business process solutions for health care providers serving more than 600 hospital and other clients nationwide.

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