Successful screening programs: colorectal cancer screening lowers death rates

Successful screening programs: colorectal cancer screening lowers death rates

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Colorectal cancer screening reduces death rates
Colon cancer is one of the three most common types of cancer in Germany. Around 26,000 people die of it every year in Germany. As a current analysis shows, the death rate is reduced by this type of cancer in countries with screening programs.

Early detection can save lives
According to health experts, colorectal cancer is the third most common cause of cancer death for men after prostate and lung cancer and the second most common cause of cancer death for women after breast cancer in Germany. To protect yourself, you should have regular checkups from a certain age. This is especially important if the family has had colon cancer cases. Early detection can save lives because a tumor in the colon or rectum grows slowly and does not cause any problems for a long time for most people affected.

Decreasing colorectal cancer mortality in countries with screening programs
As the professional association of established gastroenterologists in Germany (BNG) reports on the internet portal "Gastrointestinal Doctors on the Net", a current analysis of the figures published by the World Health Organization (WHO) on causes of death shows that colorectal cancer mortality in Europe between 1989 and 2011 contributed Men have decreased by 13 percent and women by 27 percent.

According to the information, there are considerable differences in the individual countries. Countries with screening programs are said to have experienced the largest declines.

Significant decline in the face rates in Germany
"Alongside Austria, Switzerland, England, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Czech Republic and Ireland, Germany is one of the nations where the death rates for men have decreased by more than 25 percent and for women by more than 30 percent," explained Dr. Franz Josef Heil from BNG.

According to the experts, the trend of falling death rates began with the introduction of the hemoccult test in the late 1980s. Endoscopic procedures were then increasingly used in prevention until, after the turn of the millennium, legally regulated screening programs, in particular in the countries mentioned, ensured the routine use of colonoscopy in colon cancer prevention.

Men are less likely to take preventive examinations
"There are still big differences between men and women," said Dr. Salvation. "This is also due to the fact that men use the preventive check-up less frequently and develop colon cancer earlier than women, not infrequently even before the age of 56."

But when should you have a colonoscopy? "In the future it will be all about raising awareness of the risk of family stress. Anyone with first-degree relatives who have colorectal cancer should definitely talk to their family doctor or gastrointestinal doctor about preventive care options, ”said Dr. Salvation.

Colon cancer usually begins spontaneously and develops very slowly and unnoticed over a period of up to ten years. Complaints often only appear at an advanced stage. The earlier the disease is recognized, the better the chances of successful treatment. (ad)

Author and source information

Video: Colorectal cancer screening program saves lives. Kaiser Permanente (May 2022).