Life saving Screening

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Story Updated: Mar 6, 2013

Encouraging news today about colon cancer prevention. New research suggests routine colonoscopy can significantly reduce your risk for late-stage disease.

Researchers reviewed health records from more than 1-thousand adults between the ages of 55 and 85.

4-hundred-74 had been diagnosed with colon cancer... 5-hundred-38 patients without cancer were selected for comparison.

Those screened with colonoscopy had a 70% overall reduction in the risk for late-stage colorectal cancer diagnosis, including right-sided colon cancer. Right-sided colon cancer accounts for about 50 percent of new cases in the U.S. The team also found that sigmoidoscopy...which focuses on the lower part of the large intestine... was associated with a substantially reduced risk for late-stage disease in the left colon, but not the right.

The current recommendation is to start screening for colon-rectal cancer at 50. This study indicates it's something well worth scheduling.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with health information for healthier living.

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Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to 1.8 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools in our Step Up program. To learn more, visit www.excellusbcbs.com