This Is Why You Should Get Screened For Cancer

Cancer has become way too common. Don't you think it's time to know more about it?

Canadian Cancer Society thinks so too.

About one in two colorectal Cancers in Canada are diagnosed after they have spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body. This is despite most provinces being equipped with screening programs that catch the disease early or before it even starts.

The Canadian Cancer Statistics: A 2018 special report on cancer incidence by stage by the Canadian Cancer Society in partnership with Public Health Canada and Statistics Canada has revealed how most Canadians need to learn more about cancer screening.

Colorectal cancer is the second most common type of cancer diagnosed in Canada and the second leading cause of cancer death. An estimated 9,400 deaths in 2017 alone. The five-year survival rate for this form of cancer at stage four is less than 15 per cent. But, if it does get diagnosed at stage 1, the survival rate increases to 90 per cent. Which means fewer Canadians will die from this disease if more of them get screened.

But what's troubling is that the participation rates in colorectal cancer screening programs are low. “Increasing the number of people who are screened could have a significant impact for colorectal cancer in Canada. Not only can screening increase the chances of survival by detecting colorectal cancer early, when it’s most treatable, it can also detect precancerous growths so they can be removed before they turn into cancer. This makes colorectal cancer screening a powerful prevention tool,” said Dr. Leah Smith, Senior Manager of Surveillance at CCS.

So, you should definitely talk to your healthcare professional about what cancer screening options are right for you. And, get them done if needed! CCS recommends that Canadians between ages 50 to 74 who are not at high risk of colorectal cancer should get screened for it every two years with a simple at-home stool test.

Colorectal cancer can be prevented and treated, which makes education and awareness about its risk factors--such as unhealthy eating, physical inactivity, and smoking--so important. I encourage all Canadians to get informed and to take steps to lower their risk of developing colorectal cancer, including speaking with their healthcare professionals about screening options,” said Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health. “The Government of Canada is committed to working with partners, including the Canadian Cancer Society, to continue to promote screening programs and to educate Canadians about how to reduce their cancer risk.”

Don't you think with how common this disease is, we should start taking it more seriously?

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