Colonoscopies key in detecting colorectal cancer

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – March is Colorectal Cancer awareness month. The American Cancer Society estimates about 140,000 people are affected by the cancer each year, and about 50,000 of those people will die.

Dr. Stephen Deutsch, a gastroenterologist at IU Health Arnett, appeared on News 18 This Morning to discuss symptoms and prevention.

Interestingly, Dr. Deutsch said the number one symptom of colon cancer was a lack of symptoms. “Far and away, the most common symptom of colon cancer is that you have no symptoms at all. You need to be screened at age 50 for most people, because the disease is known as a silent killer. It often begins as the growth of a polyp – a growth within the colon that grows over a period of ten years before it becomes cancer. In those early stages, you may have no symptoms. So the only way to know is to be screened and have a colonoscopy.”

Deutsch also mentioned that IU Health has partnered with Purdue University for a study on colon cancer. The research centers around polyp samples taken from colorectal cancer patients.

Click on the video above to view the entire interview of Dr. Stephen Deutsch on News 18 This Morning.

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