Iroquois County Seal

March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month. Colon Cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. Factors that increase risk for Colon Cancer include family history, inflammatory bowel disease, diets low in fiber and high in processed meats, a sedentary lifestyle, tobacco use, and a diet low in fruits and vegetables. People can decrease their risk of developing Colon Cancer by increasing the amount of fiber in their diet including adding more fruits and vegetables, decreasing consumption of processed meats, ceasing tobacco use and increasing physical activity. Symptoms of Colon Cancer include unexplained weight loss, persistent abdominal pain or cramping, blood in the stools, constipation and diarrhea, or any change in bowel habits. Check with your doctor if you have any of these signs.

Even without symptoms, screening for Colon Cancer can detect pre-cancerous polyps and cancer in the early stages when more treatment options are available. Many people delayed screenings such as a colonoscopy due to COVID-19. If you are over 45 years old, talk to your healthcare provider about screening for Colon Cancer.