260 Patchogue Yaphank Rd # C
East Patchogue, NY 11772
631-289-0300

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By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
August 12, 2015
Category: Gastroenterology

Find out how often you should get colon cancer screenings in Suffolk County.

According to the American Cancer Society, it’s recommended that both men and women over the age of 60 should be getting regular Colon Cancer Screening colon cancer screenings from their Suffolk County gastroenterologist. Those patients at average risk for developing colorectal cancer should get one of the following tests:

  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy (every five years)
  • Colonoscopy (10 year)
  • Virtual colonoscopy/CT colonography (five years)
  • Double-contrast barium enema (5 years)

If your flexible sigmoidoscopy, CT colonography or barium enema results have come back positive then your Suffolk County gastroenterologist will advise that you have a colonoscopy.

What puts someone at risk for colorectal cancer?

There are several factors that could increase your chances of developing colorectal cancer:

Medical History Factors

  • Family history of colorectal cancer or polyps
  • Past history of colorectal cancer or polyps
  • A history of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease


Lifestyle Factors

Diet: Those with diets high in red meat (e.g. beef, pork, etc.) and processed meats (e.g. hot dogs) are also at an increased risk for colorectal cancer. Even cooking meats at extreme temperatures can increase this risk, even though the cause isn’t entirely clear. Try to incorporate more vegetables, fruits and whole grains into your diet and talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologist about your diet and other ways to make it more colon-friendly.

Sedentary lifestyle: If you don’t exercise or aren’t physically active then you are more likely to develop colorectal cancer than someone who is physically active. Therefore, incorporate more exercises into your daily life (at least 30 minutes of cardio five times a week) to reduce your cancer risk.

Obesity: While obese men tend to have a stronger link to developing colorectal cancer, it can affect both men and women. If you are overweight, talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologist about the best ways to lose weight to reduce your risk.

Smoking: While smoking is more directly linked to an increase in lung cancer, it can also predispose you to colorectal cancer. We would be happy to discuss the different smoking cessation options out there that can help protect your colon health.

Alcohol use: Heavy alcohol use has also been linked to colorectal cancer. This may have to do with the decrease in folic acid that is found in heavy drinkers. Men should limit their alcohol consumption to two drinks a day and women to only one drink a day.

Whether you are at risk for colon cancer or not you should still follow the American Cancer Society guidelines for colon cancer screenings. These screenings save lives. If it’s time you got screened call your Suffolk County gastroenterologist at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates.

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