Ending Inequities

Statistically, Black Americans are more likely to develop colon cancer than any other group. And both Black and Hispanic Americans are more likely to be diagnosed with colon cancer at later stages. This is partly due to differences in access to screening and healthcare. Among the four most common cancers in the U.S., colon cancers occur more often in rural populations. AI/AN people had higher incidence rates during 2014-2018 for colon cancer.

The Course To Treatment

Take a look at the facts and disparities behind colon cancer as well as screening and treatment options.

Facts and Disparities

According to Fight Colorectal Cancer, Colon cancer is the 2nd leading cause of cancer death among men and women combined in the United States.

Black Americans are more likely to be diagnosed and die from colon cancer than most other groups. 1 in 23 men and 1 in 25 women will be diagnosed with colon cancer.
25-30% of colon cancer patients have a family history of the disease. 1 in 3 people are not up-to-date with colon cancer screening. But affordable, take-home options exist.
60% of colon cancer deaths could be prevented with screening. Less than 50% of Asian Americans are up-to-date with colon cancer screening.

While rates of colon cancer in older adults have been decreasing over the last several decades, rates of colon cancer in young adults are increasing and is expected to increase by more than 140% by 2030. This is part of an ongoing trend that began in the mid 1990’s. From 1994 to 2012, there was a 51% increase in colon cancer in people ages 20-49.

But there is hope, the rate of people being diagnosed with colon cancer has been decreasing overall since the mid-1980s, due to increased screening among older adults. From 2013 to 2017, incidence rates dropped by about 1% each year, according to research by the American Cancer Society.

For more information, visit https://fightcolorectalcancer.org/

Screening Options

When caught in early stages, colon cancer is treatable in about 90% of people. Many patients with early-stage colon cancer have no symptoms and are diagnosed through screening.

Who Should Get Screened?
Men and women who are 45 years and older with average risk should get screened regularly. Statistically, Black Americans are more likely to develop colon cancer than any other group. And both Black and Hispanic Americans are more likely to be diagnosed with colon cancer at later stages. These populations need to talk to their doctors about screening options.

Who Is At High Risk?
A personal history of colon cancer or certain types of polyps, a family history of colon cancer, a personal history of inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease), confirmed or suspected hereditary colon cancer syndrome, such as familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) or Lynch syndrome (hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer or HNPCC), personal history of getting radiation to the abdomen (belly) or pelvic area to treat a prior cancer

What Are My Options For Screening?
Cologuard (Can get screened every three years for average risk), FIT(Fecal Immuno-Chemical Test can get every year for average risk), or Colonoscopy (Recommended for anyone who is of high risk)

For more information, visit https://www.screeninghasmeaning.com/

Treatment

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with Colon cancer, the good news is treatment is available. The Colorectal Cancer Alliance has some resources they recommend:

Personalized Treatment Program
The Alliance and Perthera have partnered to provide personalized treatment options to stage III and IV patients with colon cancer.

Stage Of Diagnosis
Learn more about your stage and what to expect.

Know Your Biomarker
Biomarker testing is an important tool used to individualize your treatment plan.

Get Support
Colorectal Cancer Alliance offers a helpline is free and staffed by certified patient and family support navigators, who are ready to help.

Emotional Health
Cancer affects your physical health, it can bring up a wide range of feelings you’re not used to dealing with.

The Colorectal Cancer Alliance has a more comprehensive guide on treatment strategies by where you are in your Colon cancer journey. Please visit https://www.ccalliance.org/ for more information.

Partners

We would like to thank our partners in helping improve Colon and Colorectal Cancer outcomes.

Exact Sciences

Fight Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal Cancer Alliance

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National Minority Quality Forum is a research and educational organization dedicated to ensuring that high-risk racial and ethnic populations and communities receive optimal health care. This nonprofit, nonpartisan organization integrates data and expertise in support of initiatives to eliminate health disparities.

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