Colorectal cancer (cancer that starts in the colon or rectum) is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death in men and women combined in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates that 147,950 people will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer and 53,200 could die from this disease in 2020.

On average, the lifetime risk of developing colon cancer is about one in 23 for men and women combined, however, this varies widely according to individual risk factors. About 71% of cases arise in the colon and about 29% in the rectum.

Colorectal cancer survival rates

Since the mid-1980s, the colorectal cancer survival rate has been increasing, due in part to increased awareness and screening. By finding polyps and cancer in the earlier stages, it is easiest to treat. Improved treatment options have also contributed to a rise in survival rates.

  • The five-year survival rate for colorectal cancer found at the local stage is 90%.
  • The five-year survival rate for colorectal cancer found at the regional stage is 71%.
  • The five-year survival rate for colorectal cancer found at the distant stage is 14%.
  • There are currently more than one million colorectal cancer survivors alive in the US.

Colorectal cancer screening saves lives.

Regular screening, beginning at age 50, is the key to preventing colorectal cancer. If you’re 50 to 75 years old, get screened for colorectal cancer regularly. If you’re younger than 50 and think you may be at high risk of getting colorectal cancer, or if you’re older than 75, contact Gagon Family Medicine today for a screening.

Colorectal Risk Calculator

This tool estimates the risk of colorectal cancer over the next 5 years, and the lifetime risk for men and women. Take this short quiz to determine your risk factors.

> Colorectal Risk Factor Tool

Move More & Win a Prize!

During the month of March, Gagon Family Medicine is encouraging everyone to “move more” in conjunction with National Colorectal Cancer Awareness month. Take a photo of yourself working out, walking, dancing or however you move and post it to your Facebook Page. If you tag Gagon Family Medicine with the following: #movemorewithgagon you will be entered in our drawing for a healthy prize!