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Do You Need a Cancer Screening This Fall?

Early detection of cancer makes treatment more effective. For cancers such as colorectal, physicians can remove cancer-causing cells before they become cancerous.

The American Cancer Society emphasizes the need to screen for the following cancers:

  1. Breast Cancer Screening

All women should schedule breast cancer risk assessment when they reach 25 years. If you have a minimal risk, schedule breast cancer screening every year when you get to 40 years. 

Personal history of the precancerous condition of the ovaries or breast, or breast cancer puts you at high risk. Also, family history (mother’s or father’s side) of breast cancer and possession of BRCA2 or BRCA1 gene mutation increases the risk.

Finally, if you were exposed to radiation to the underarms, chest, or neck when you were between 10 to 30 years, you are at high risk. All women at a high risk should have a mammogram annually once they reach 30 years.

  1. Cervical Cancer

Women aged 21 to 29 years should have a pap smear test every three years. Those aged 30 to 65, they should get pap smear (after every three years) and HPV test (once every five years). Women over 65 years should not go for pap smear unless they have a history of pre-cancer diagnosis. Ladies who had had an organ transplant, are HIV positive, or have used steroids for a long time, are at a high risk.

  1. Skin Cancer Screening

Doctors encourage self-examination of the skin and if you notice something abnormal, notify the physician. Request the doctor to conduct a skin exam whenever you go for a routine check-up.

  1. Prostate Cancer

Screening for prostate cancer should start at 45 or 50 years, depending on the risk. African American Men or any man with a family history (if prostate was diagnosed before 65 years) of prostate cancer are at high risk so, they should be screened at age 45.

  1. Colorectal Cancer Screening

All adults above 45 years should have the screening, especially those with irritable bowels or that have a family history of colorectal cancer.

  1. Lung Cancer Screening

Consider lung cancer screening if you have all the following:

  • Aged 55 to 77
  • You smoke or quit less than fifteen years ago
  • Have a history of smoking one cigarette a day for thirty days or two packets a day for fifteen years

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