Letters to the Editor

Screening Day’s goal is to save American lives | Letter

As a gastroenterologist, I am writing to remind you and your readers that while March is an exciting time in the world of college basketball, it is also Colon Cancer Awareness Month.

March 8 we are hoping to rally 2,013 first-time patients nationwide to schedule or have a colonoscopy for National Colon Cancer Screening Day.

Colon cancer is the third-leading cause of death in both men and women in this country, but unlike many other devastating illnesses, colon cancer can be detected and prevented with one very simple test – a colonoscopy. And yet, nearly 40 percent of at-risk Americans are not taking this lifesaving step.

Colonoscopy is the most effective method of screening for colon cancer. It is a simple procedure done under sedation, typically taking less than a half hour, and allows patients to resume normal activities the following day.

The lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer is one in 20, and everyone over the age of 50 (45 for African American) is at risk for colon cancer.

If you have been putting off your colonoscopy, it’s time to get in the game. Join me on March 8 to be part of team Stop Colon Cancer Now.

Dr. Ralph Katsman

Digestive Health Specialists

Bonney Lake

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