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Screen Test

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A new study in the New England Journal of Medicine says it prevents an average 40% of all colon cancers.

This 22 year study questioned nearly 90,000 health care professionals: more than 30,000 women, nearly 60 thousand men.

Every two years, they reported on their own colon cancer screening results.

The study says colonoscopies -- using a lighted flexible tube to visualize the entire colon -- made the biggest difference: a 56% reduction in colon cancer diagnosis.

A similar procedure – sigmoidoscopy, which only checks the lower colon -- lowered risk by 40%.

Yearly stool tests for hidden blood decreased cancer risk by more than a third.

But, at 56% colon cancer risk reduction, colonoscopy is best.

The U-S Preventive Services Task force recommendation for all adults 50 to 75:
Annual stool tests;
Or sigmoidoscopy every 5 years, with a stool test every 3 years;
Or a full colonoscopy every 10 years, which I think best. It checks the entire colon.

Nobody looks forward to a colonoscopy. It takes time. And the prep is miserable. But vital.
But the inconvenience is worth it. It could save your life.