Study finds too many col­orec­tal can­cers are found too late

Journal Pioneer - - FUN & GAMES/LIVING ROOM -

New sta­tis­tics find al­most half of the col­orec­tal can­cers in Canada are dis­cov­ered af­ter they’ve al­ready spread, even though most prov­inces and ter­ri­to­ries have screen­ing pro­grams that can catch it in early stages. The re­port by the Cana­dian Cancer So­ci­ety says about 29 per cent of col­orec­tal can­cers are di­ag­nosed at stage 3, and 20 per cent are di­ag­nosed at stage 4. That has the so­ci­ety urg­ing those be­tween the ages of 50 and 74 who are not high risk to get tested ev­ery two years. They point to an at-home stool test can even de­tect pre-can­cer­ous signs. One of the re­port’s au­thors, Dr. Leah Smith, says early de­tec­tion is key to boost­ing sur­vival rates but rel­a­tively few seem to be tak­ing ad­van­tage of or­ga­nized screen­ing pro­grams. The five-year sur­vival rate when di­ag­nosed at stage 4 is less than 15 per cent. The rate in­creases to 90 per cent when it is found at stage 1. Wed­nes­day’s study was gath­ered in part­ner­ship with the Public Health Agency of Canada and Sta­tis­tics Canada.

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