What is the screening and why we should do it?
The screening programs are organised more often by the government of one country and they include all the population from specified group.
Why we do screening?
From scientific reports we know, that certain kind of cancer has very high mortality in some countries. The screening program is aimed to specific group of people to identify the possibility of having cancer. It uses more available resources and covers maximum number of patients.
When the results show a minimum risk of cancer, than the patient is transferred to specialist for accurate diagnosis.
Colon cancer screening program: what is included?
Man and women over 45 y.
Hereditary of one or more relatives, diagnosed with colon cancer
What we do?
- Occult blood test: fecal probe test for occult presents of blood into the stools. If the test is positive, the patient is referred to gastroenterologist for further analysis.
Not always the positive test means you have a cancer. Sometimes it is false positive because of intake of some specific foods, iron containing medicines etc.
- Sigmoidoscopy or fibrocolonoscopy: instrumental method for visual investigation of the part or the hole colon, using camera and plastic tube.
What is the final result from screening?
- Lowering the risk from colon cancer development in latest stages with around 50 %
- Early diagnostic of colon cancer which gives a better prognosis.
An example for efficient screening program is Japan.
There they performed a huge screening program for gastric cancer, because they know, that the country has high morbidity and mortality rates for that kind of cancer.
Using this program, they diagnose the disease in most early stages and now they’re treating it with a small resection of the stomach or even submucosal endoscopic resection
Is it worth?
My professional advice is: if you are 45 y and above, and you have one relative with colon cancer: do a screening once per 2 years.