At-home colon cancer test kits available
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the second deadliest type of cancer in the United States for men, and the third for women, Southern Seven Health Department reports.
The health department noted that if found early, nine out of 10 people can expect to be cured from the disease.
In Illinois, 17 people are diagnosed with the colorectal cancer every day.
For those living in rural areas of the country, compared with those living in urban areas, the incidence and mortality rates are even higher due to the increase in overall cancer risk factors.
The American Cancer Society reports three “Hotspots” for colon cancer in the United States.
Each of the lower seven counties in Illinois are located inside one of the largest hotspot.
In response to this growing public health concern, Southern Seven Health Department once again offers free, at-home colon cancer screening.
The Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT) kit, acquired through Southern Seven Health Department, is a highly sensitive, take home test that detects blood in the stool, which may indicate colon cancer, with a 97 percent accuracy rate. The test is provided by the health department.
Although FIT does not diagnose, treat or cure colorectal cancer, it does give the patient and their physician valuable information that could save the patient’s life.
FIT is for anyone age 50 who hasn’t had a colonoscopy in the last 10 years or who would like a screening between colonoscopies. It is non-invasive and requires no prep by the patient.
FIT does not replace a colonoscopy, the health department says; it is an option for colorectal cancer screening.
FIT is not a cancer preventative, cure or treatment for colon cancer.
The test is available at no charge to the patient if returned to Southern Seven Health Department within two weeks.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that people at average risk of colorectal cancer start regular screening at age 50.
Southern Seven Health Departments says that unfortunately, about 40 percent of people diagnosed with colon cancer are found in late stages when the survival rate is very low.
As a result, the health department recommends early and continued screenings as part of a person’s overall healthcare routine.
To learn more about the Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT), or to receive a test kit, contact Southern Seven Health Department at 618-634-2297.