Colorectal Cancer: Why Is It Still Such A Threat?

portrait of health care worker wearing surgical mask and blue (BlackDoctor.org) — March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Despite declines in rates of new cases and deaths from colorectal cancer in the African American community, this cancer is still the third leading cause of death.

Death rates from colorectal cancer are about 30 percent higher in African Americans than in whites and are more than twice as high as rates in Asian/Pacific Islanders, American Indians and Hispanics. But astoundingly, 60 percent of those deaths are avoidable with regular screenings.

“Colorectal cancer is one of only a few cancers that can be prevented through screening,” said Al Stabilito of the American Cancer Society. “Precancerous polyps, from which colon cancers often develop, can be identified and removed before they become cancerous.”

What is Colorectal Cancer?

The colon is the large intestine, or large bowel, and the rectum is the passageway that connects the colon to the anus. Colorectal cancer is the term used to refer to cancer that develops in the colon and/or rectum. It is also called colon cancer.