(HealthDayNews) — After cancers of the lung and breast, colorectal cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer deaths among U.S. women. About 130,000 new cases of colorectal cancer are diagnosed in the United States every year, resulting in 56,000 deaths.
But colorectal cancer is highly preventable, according to the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. Screening tests, including colonoscopy and flexible sigmoidoscopy, may detect small grape-like growths called polyps that can become cancerous.
Beginning at age 50, everyone should be screened for colorectal cancer, even if they have no pain or other symptoms. You should begin screening earlier if you have a personal or family history of colorectal cancer, polyps, rectal bleeding, or long-standing inflammatory bowel disease such as ulcerative colitis.