Close your eyes and imagine what your future holds. Maybe you’re looking forward to watching your grandchildren grow or taking a dream vacation. Safeguarding your health today with colorectal cancer screening helps make your future goals possible.
Regular colorectal cancer screenings have the power to save your life—and we’re not being dramatic. Colorectal cancer is curable in up to 90 percent of people when it is found in early stages, according to the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons. The best way to find colorectal cancer early—or to prevent the disease entirely—is through regular screening.
Six Ways to Screen
Colorectal cancer screening is fully covered as a preventive examination under the CHI Medical Plan. We offer six options for this life-saving screening:
- Annual stool fecal immunochemical test (FIT)
- Capsule colonoscopy
- FIT/fecal DNA test
- Flexible sigmoidoscopy
- Virtual colonoscopy, also known as CT colonography
If you have a capsule or virtual colonoscopy or opt for a flexible sigmoidoscopy or FIT test and your results are abnormal, you’ll likely need a follow-up colonoscopy to find out why. For this reason, having a traditional colonoscopy—which is only needed once every 10 years—may make the most sense.
In fact, this test is considered the best option for colorectal cancer screening because it not only helps physicians identify cancer in early stages, but may also prevent cancer entirely. During a colonoscopy, physicians view the inside of your entire colon and rectum and, if needed, remove small growths called polyps that may become cancerous over time. Many people fear the test, but you won’t feel a thing. A light sedative helps keep you comfortable during the procedure.
The American Cancer Society recommends adults with an average risk of colorectal cancer begin screening at age 50. Talk with your physician about the test that’s right for you.