Cancer Screenings

Early detection can make the difference in your survival and recovery from cancer.  There are some important screenings that can provide early detection for both women and men.

Women

The most common cancers in women are breast, ovarian, cervical, colon, skin and lung cancer.  Breast cancer is the most common cancer that many women face today; it can occur at any age but is more likely to occur after the age of 40. Cervical cancer can affect any woman who is or has been sexually active. Any adult can have colorectal cancer but most colon cancers are found in people 50 and older or people with a family history of this type of cancer.  Anyone who spends time in the sun can have skin cancer.  People with fair skin, blonde or red hair are more likely to get skin cancer. Skin damage accumulates, so daily sun screen protection is a must with a SPF protection of 15 or higher.

The screenings that every woman should know about and adopt are:

Breast cancer screenings:

  • Monthly self breast exams beginning at age 20
  • Clinical breast exam and annual mammogram after age 40

Cervical cancer screening:

  • Annual pap and pelvic exam beginning at age 18 or beginning of sexual activity

Skin cancer screening:

  • Monthly self skin examinations

Colon & rectal cancer screening:

  • Colonoscopy beginning at age 50 or earlier if you have a close relative with a history of colon cancer

Men

Men have cancer risks too!  Lung cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S. and the leading cause of death in men but they are also at risk for cancer of the prostate, testes, colon, and rectum.  Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men in the U.S. Most men who get prostate cancer are over the age 55.  Cancer of the testes affects mostly younger to middle aged men.  Those who have a history of undescended testicles as a boy are at a higher risk of developing this type of cancer.  Colon and rectal cancer usually affects men over the age 50 but can also affect those with a family history of the disease or certain hereditary conditions.

 

The screenings that every man should know about and adopt are:

Prostate screening:

  • Annual PSA and digital rectal exam for prostate cancer beginning at age 50

Colon & rectal cancer screening:

  • Colonoscopy at age 50 or sooner if you have a close relative with a history of colon cancer

Skin cancer screening:

  • Monthly self skin examinations

In addition to regular screenings, whether you are a man or a woman making healthy lifestyle changes will help reduce your cancer risk.  Healthy changes include: don’t smoke, be physically active, eat at least 5 servings of fruit & vegetables, limit fatty foods & red meats, maintain a healthy weight, follow recommended screening guidelines and use sunscreen and limit time in the sun.