There has been a challenge set before doctors that, by the year 2018, the screening process for colon cancer would be as high as 80%. However in the past five years, there has been a plateauing effect. The momentum that was once there to raise money for research and to want to raise awareness has stopped. There was once people like Katie Couric, encouraging people to go to their doctors and at least ask about a colonoscopy. In the past couple years, there has only been a slight increase in the percentage of people going to get screened. So how do we help change that?
Giving options is always a great thing for people to hear, knowing that they won’t be forced to do something they won’t necessarily want to do. So doctors lay them out, a colonoscopy is the only one that is able to not only screen for the cancer but is also preventative of the cancer. There is the FIT test that has to do with stool DNA testing, but some people still don’t want to do that. People don’t want to have to prep for getting screened for colon cancer, so how are doctors trying to appeal to the people?
Emerging now is a blood-based test for colon cancer screening. Know that blood-based testing is routine for patients when they go into the clinic. When they get screened for their annual physical, they can do a colon cancer screening test if they’re denied all the other options. This is something that patients may be more receptive to. The new blood test tests for methylation of the SEPT9 gene. But even with this new screening test, it is still not 100% chance of detection. Something that is very important to understand is that one test doesn’t catch all; there are variances. This is a test that will easily reach people that have been missed in the past. This isn’t the end all be all but now you have a more comfortable and convenient method of testing that has the potential to reach more people and save more lives! So go call your doctor today and ask them about all the ways they can help you get comfortably and conveniently screened for colon cancer and how often you should get checked. It can save your life!