Colon Cancer Update with The Cleveland Clinic
WebMD Live Events Transcript
March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Cleveland Clinic colorectal cancer specialists Carol Burke, MD, and James M. Church, BSc, MBChB, MedSci, joined us on March 15 and answered your questions about risk factors, diagnostic tests, the latest treatment options and more.
The opinions expressed herein are the guests' alone and have not been reviewed by a WebMD physician. If you have questions about your health, you should consult your personal physician. This event is meant for informational purposes only.
The most common risk factor is a family history of colon cancer , and if you have one parent who's had a colon colorectal cancer, your risk doubles, which means 12%. If you have two close relatives with colon cancer the risk goes up five to six-fold, so that's somewhere about 30% to 35% risk of getting colon cancer in your lifetime. That's why knowing your family history of colorectal cancer is so important. The other common risk factor is having had a precancerous polyp or a colon or rectal cancer yourself in the recent past.
It is known that colonoscopy will miss a significant number of adenomas. The smaller the adenoma the greater the risk of it being missed at colonoscopy; therefore, we always schedule follow-up between 3 and 5 years so that if an adenoma was missed at the original examination, it doesn't have a chance to grow too big or become malignant before it is detected.
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