Block Island Times

Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Each year on March 1, everyone is encouraged to “Dress Blue” to acknowledge the disease of colon cancer, in the same way that February’s “Go Red Day” brings awareness to cardiovascular disease. Although there is often social discomfort in talking about diseases like colorectal cancer and bodily functions like bowel movements, colon cancer is highly preventable, so raising awareness is very important. A 2018 study by Kaiser Permanente found a 67 percent reduction in cancer deaths among people who have colonoscopies.Colorectal cancer, more commonly referred to as colon cancer, is a disease in which cells in the colon or rectum grow out of control. The colon is the large intestine. It is responsible for removing water and nutrients from the foods we eat and pushing the remaining waste into the rectum for removal from the body. Colon cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in men and women in the U.S. In Rhode Island, the rate is 29 percent per 100,000 people.Colon cancer risk increases with age and is higher in people with certain bowel diseases such as Crohn’s

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