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COLORECTAL CANCER SCREENING
nicholson posted a topic in General Health and Longevity[Note: this was a discussion that Rodney started in response to a post on another thread. After talking about it with Rodney, we thought it worthwhile on this new "General Health and Longevity" forum to start a new thread on colon cancer screening. So I've moved the discussion to its own thread here. While our good diets make colon cancer less of an issue for CR practitioners than the general population, it is a serious enough health risk (3rd leading cause of cancer deaths) that it is worth serious consideration, and screening for. -Dean] Despite having no known family history of colon problems of any kind in previous generations, my brother and I both seem to acquire a new polyp about every two years. So, of course, we need to have occasional colonoscopies. My last colonoscopy was two weeks ago, and prior to that the previous one had been in 2009. You can guess how many new polyps they found this time: three of course: One of moderate size, one smaller, and one tiny one ...... likely to have appeared, respectively, in 2010, 2012 and 2014. All of them were quickly and painlessly removed and sent to pathology. Polyps of course, start off benign, but if left long enough, are likely to turn into cancer. Now the relevence of this to Dean's post is that none of the nine polyps I have had removed over the years have shown even the very earliest suggestions of turning cancerous - even the one just removed, for example, that probably had been sitting there for five years since 2010. (But what would the current status of the one found in 1998 be, had it not been found and removed?) It seems likely the explanation of the benign nature of my polyps might be that I have gone a long way out of my way to avoid eating stuff that, while no doubt devastatingly tasty, might also be devastatingly carcinogenic (incinerated fat, for example, in particular). Anyway, SFSG. I have noted to have another colonoscopy in 2019 and expect them to find another two then. Six years is a bit too long to go between checks for someone who regularly seems to sprout new ones. Anyone approaching the age of 60, who is aiming to live to be 100, and has never had one, probably ought to get a baseline colonoscopy and then follow the gastroenterologist's advice. Having them reduces the chance of getting colon cancer - a rather common form of the disease - by not far short of 100%. Not only that, the health systems have finally figured out that doing colonoscopies at appropriate intervals - which will vary from patient to patient - is less expensive than the cost of treating the cancer when it appears if colonoscopies are not done. Incidentally, all my polyps have been found in the ASCENDING colon or at the very start of the transverse colon. They would never have been found by any other investigative technique until far too late. It may also be worth mentioning that it is surprising to me how often, even when cancer is found in a polyp, if it is found early, the cancer can be surgically cured. And I do mean *genuinely* cured - not the five-year supposed cure so often talked about in cancer treatments. But changes in diet are of course necessary if cancerous polyps are not to recur. Rodney. "The unverified conventional wisdom is almost invariably mistaken."