Early detection of colon cancer is made possible by Colonoscopy. More patients are willing to undergo this screening procedure that helps to nip treatable cancers in the bud at the very onset.
Cary Gross, M.D and other researchers from the Medical School at Yale University, found that there is a significant rise in colonoscopy screening that helps in the early detection of colon cancer in people .This has helped early treatment possible.
Doctors guide a slender, bendable tube with a small camera is guided through a patient's large intestine, in colonoscopy. The doctors scrutinise and search for any visible changes in the inner lining of the colon that may suggest cancerous changes.
Statistical data retrieved from the National Cancer Institute show that colorectal cancer is presently the third most-commonly diagnosed cancer among both sexes in the U.S. Each year about 60,000 new cases are detected among people over 65 years.
The researchers opine that even a small increase in the percentage of early diagnosis can have a significant impact in treatment of colorectal cancer; rise in early diagnosis can have an impact, Gross' team notes.
This study was published in The Journal of the American Medical Association. Medicare has made available financial cover for treatment of patients diagnosed with colon cancer since 2001.Earlier it only offered partial financial support for treatment between 1998 and 2001.Prior to that there was no Medicare cover for patients with colon cancer. Data pertaining to all three periods were studied by the team of researchers.
The study found out that more patients were able to undergo colonoscopy since Medicare offered medical insurance dating back to 1998.However, the rates have not risen dramatically after the medical cover was made universal in 2001.The researchers also unearthed that early detection of colon cancer became a pattern ever since Medicare plans were initiated. When there was no Medicare cover only 22.5% cases were diagnosed in the early stages of cancer. This improved to 25.5% after partial protection was implemented. After 2001, 26.3% cases were seen to be diagnosed early.
A huge number of colon cancer patients discover they have this illness in its later stages making treatment more difficult. The National Cancer Institute advises screening for colorectal cancer for everybody over the age of 50. Those who belong to high risk group for colon cancer might need to be screened at an earlier age. High risk people should not hesitate to get their doctor's advice regarding the suitable age at which they should undergo a screening programme.