I want to remind everyone that March is
Colon Cancer Awareness Month. On March 1, I had the privilege of
attending a health fair in Naperville sponsored by the American
Cancer Society. I spoke and distributed colon cancer awareness
materials to over 150 individuals.
Colon cancer is the second deadliest cancer in Illinois claiming
2,500 lives annually. Yet it's one of the only cancers that can be
prevented through screenings that allow doctors to find polyps
growing in the colon and remove them before they turn
It is recommended that if you are 50 years old or older, you are
due for a colonoscopy. Nine out of every 10 cases of colon cancer
are found in this age group. If you have a family history, I
recommend having the conversation with your doctor that you may
need to be screened even earlier.
The good news is that colonoscopy is covered by insurance once
every 10 years, and sometimes five years if recommended by your
doctor. Insurance plans like Medicare and Medicaid will pay for
preventive treatment. The American Cancer Society is working to
provide free colon cancer screening for patients who lack medical
coverage to pay for the test; free tests are available for those
without health insurance through partnerships with hospitals across
Illinois. Among the hospitals now offering free exams are
Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Rush University Medical Center,
Southern Illinois Healthcare, Southern Illinois University School
of Medicine, and the University of Chicago Hospitals.
The American Cancer Society's Epidemiology Research Program is
currently inviting men and women between the ages of 30 and 65
years who have no personal history of cancer to join their Cancer
Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3) that will begin in April. The ultimate
goal is to enroll at least 300,000 adults from various
racial/ethnic backgrounds across the U.S. By joining CPS-3, you can
help researchers understand how to prevent cancer, which will save
lives and give people more of their most precious
If you or someone you know is interested in participating in the
study, please contact your local cancer society. The nearest local
for Dupage is the DuPage Regional Office at 1801 Meyers Road,
Suite 100, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181. The phone number is
630-932-1141. They are open Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Please contact Lauren Brandmeyer for additional information
regarding the study.
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