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Screenings urged during colon cancer awareness month


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MEDIA CONTACT: Alice Sluga, 480-882-4910;

Screenings urged during colon cancer awareness month
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (March 1, 2008) – Colon cancer is the second most common cause of death from cancer in the U.S., responsible for more than 50,000 deaths annually, yet it’s survivable if caught in the early stages. In fact, the five-year survival rate for localized colon cancer is more than 90 percent. “As part of National Colon Cancer Awareness Month, we urge everyone who is 50 or older to take responsibility for their well being and get screened for colon cancer,” said Scottsdale Healthcare gastroenterologist Dr. Gavin Levinthal. “Screenings are designed to detect polyps and colorectal cancer in the early, most curable stages. One out of 18 people in this country will develop colorectal cancer in their lifetime and 20 percent of colorectal cancers are found after the disease has spread to distant organs." Age and health history can affect the risk of developing colon cancer. Risk factors include the following: • • • • • • Age 50 or older. A family history of cancer of the colon or rectum. A personal history of cancer of the colon, rectum, ovary, endometrium, or breast. A history of polyps in the colon. A history of ulcerative colitis (ulcers in the lining of the large intestine) or Crohn's disease. Certain hereditary conditions, such as familial adenomatous polyposis and hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer.

For more information, or to schedule a colon cancer screening appointment, call Dr. Levinthal at 480-946-3711 or call the Scottsdale Healthcare physician referral line at 480-882-4636. Established in 1962 and governed by a local volunteer board of directors, Scottsdale Healthcare is the not-for-profit parent organization of the Scottsdale Healthcare Shea, Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn and Scottsdale Healthcare Thompson Peak hospitals, the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center, Scottsdale Clinical Research Institute, Scottsdale Healthcare Home Health Services and Scottsdale Healthcare Community Health Services. ###

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