HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT) – There are some new guidelines from U.S. Preventive Task Force for Colorectal Cancer. The organization said there’s been an increase in colon cancer in patients ages 40 to 49.
Medical experts are recommending colorectal cancer screenings begin at age 45. Dr. Porter Glover is a gastroenterologist for the Hattiesburg Clinic. He said screening early could save lives.
“The diagnosis rates for colorectal cancer has been decreasing in older populations. However, the younger populations ages 40 to 49 the diagnosis rate has increased by 15 percent,” Glover said.
The American Cancer Society predicted for 2021 there will be more than 100,000 new cases of colon cancer. Experts said the cancer is treatable if it’s detected early.
“This is something gastroenterologists see far to often in our daily practices, where we see advanced cancers before the age of 50.”
There are more than three types of screening tests. Keenon Walker knows first hand the importance of getting screened early.
“They found two polyps one of which was precancerous. Had I waited until 50, it could of been full blown cancer by that time, so luckily they were able to catch it early,” said Walker.
Glover said the new guidance helps protect people that could be at high risk.
“This is going to drastically improve our detection rates for the population 45 to age 50. Colonoscopy is the gold standard for colon cancer screening and save lives by lowering the age range for screenings,” he said.