With the end of March, we are bringing up colorectal cancer awareness. We should bear in mind that it is still the second deadliest cancer in Europe. During the whole month, healthcare workers take the chance to educate the community. But also to encourage everyone (especially those in risk groups) to examine themselves regularly.
According to European guidelines for quality assurance in colon cancer screening and diagnosis screening colonoscopies do not need to be performed at intervals shorter than 10 years, however average risk colonoscopy screening should not be performed before age 50 and should be discontinued after age 74.
Protecting one’s health is important. But any people face obstacles in accessing life-saving resources to prevent, detect, and treat colorectal cancer, including :
Unfortunately, we are observing that only a few European countries have reached their target to screen 65% of 50 to 74-year-olds. These countries are testing 4 times more people than the rest. Reaching this target by every country could lead us to save 100,000 lives a year . In addition it is important to remember that colorectal cancer doesn't give many symptoms in the early stages. Those patients who follow colonoscopy screening recommendations have an impact on decreasing number in cancer rates. What are the screening options ?
Increasing age, male sex, white race, a family history of CRC (colorectal cancer) or polyps are the most common indicators for undergoing regular screening examination.
Among obesity, high consumption of red and processed meat, and low fiber consumption, there might be a new player. Sugar-sweetened beverages intake has been analyzed in comparison with early-onset colorectal cancer.
There is still much to prove, but results show that they can have an impact (even indirectly - by leading to obesity) on cancer onset.