Let’s Keep It Rolling Together During Colorectal Cancer Month at Montefiore
Montefiore Einstein’s Colorectal Cancer Screening Program
Colorectal cancer is preventable when you take the proper precautions, and curable when detected and treated early. Knowing your risk factors is a great first step toward prevention.
If you have a family history—parent, child, brother, sister—who has had colon cancer or adenomatous polyps, your risk for the disease is greater. Age is also a factor that increases risk. That’s why if you’re 45 years or older, your doctor will recommend a screening test. The three main testing options are a colonoscopy, a virtual colonoscopy, or at home stool test.
Colorectal Screening Options
Let’s start with the gold standard: colonoscopy. During this outpatient procedure, the gastroenterologist is able to directly visualize the entire colon and rectum region, identify and remove polyps, and biopsy any mass that is present. The colonoscopy is the best test that can both remove polyps and identify colorectal cancer at its earliest stages.
A virtual colonoscopy is an effective diagnostic tool. It uses an advanced CT (computerized tomography) scan to generate a 3D image of the colon and surrounding organs. Radiologists then look for any potential abnormalities.One potential benefit to virtual colonoscopy is that the home prep is easy and the patient can drive themselves home after the scan. It is also an excellent option for people who cannot be sedated because of pre-existing medical conditions. If a polyp or lesion is seen on the imaging scan, the patient will then need to have a traditional colonoscopy.
The advantage of stool screening tests is that they can be done in the comfort of one’s home, which is very convenient for patients. It is important to know that in the event of a positive result, a colonoscopy will need to be done to rule out possible colorectal cancer. Stool-based tests are a reasonable first option for individuals who are at average risk for colorectal cancer and have no symptoms.
- FIT: There are two types of FIT (fecal immunohistochemical test) that screen for colon cancer through the detection of blood in the stool. The gFOBT (guaiac-based fecal occult blood test) detects blood in the stool using a chemical called guaiac. Immunochemical FOBT, uses special antibodies to test the stool for blood. One advantage of the immunochemical FOBT is that it does not require a restriction in diet or medicines. Blood in the stool is a possible early sign of cancer. If the stool-based test is positive for blood, a colonoscopy must then be performed.
- Multi-targeted Stool Test: This test identifies DNA mutations in the cells of a stool sample. If DNA mutations are detected, this could be an early sign of colorectal cancer and a colonoscopy must then be performed.
See why our Montefiore Einstein Cancer Center is ranked in the top 1% of all U.S. hospitals for cancer care, according to U.S. News & World Report-and in the top 5% of National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer centers.
Regular screening every 10 years from age 45 to 75 is generally recommended to help prevent colorectal cancer. However, your doctor may recommend that you get screened earlier if you are at a greater risk. If you’re age 75 or older, ask your doctor whether you should continue to get screened.
Don’t ignore symptoms, or lack of symptoms. Now more than ever, it is important not to put your colon cancer screening on hold.
Making It Easy and Safe To Get the Colon Care You Need
Montefiore Einstein offers state-of-the art facilities for colorectal cancer screening in addition to a world class team of specialists. We also provide a special team of experts called Patient Navigators who will guide you through the entire process.
Services offered by our Patient Navigators include the following:
- Helping you better understand the colorectal cancer screening process and what you can expect
- Answering any questions you may have about the procedure and explain the benefits, alternatives and risks
- Providing you with educational materials, scheduling your appointment at one of our sites and carefully reviewing all instructions before the procedure
To meet our Patient Navigators and learn more about how to prevent colorectal cancer, call 718-920-7183.
Appointments are available at these locations:
Advanced Endoscopy Center
Bronx, New York 10463
Montefiore Einstein Campus
1825 Eastchester Road
4th Floor Endoscopy
Bronx, New York 10461
Montefiore Moses Campus
111 East 210th Street
2nd Floor GI Endoscopy Suite/Red Zone
Bronx, New York 10467
Montefiore Wakefield Campus
600 East 233rd Street
4th Floor Endoscopy
Bronx, New York 10466
New York GI Center
1200 Waters Place
North Lobby, Suite M117
Bronx, New York 10461