BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER)--For most people- getting a colonoscopy is one of those subjects that they just don't like to talk about, but health experts say certain groups need to consider having the procedure.
Dr. Mira Olson with Gastroenterology Center of Maine at Eastern Maine Medical Center wants to remind people that it is Colon Cancer awareness month. She says anyone in their 50's or who has a family history of colon cancer, should be tested. It is estimated that regular screening for the disease could prevent as many as 90% of colon cancer deaths each year.
Dr. Olson says,"If you catch it early it can even be removed during the colonoscopy or at least the treatment will be much less if its caught early. At times it can be curable depending on what stage it is at when diagnosed. If its diagnosed at a later stage the goal for cure and rate of cure is much much less."
In 2009 Maine was awarded a federal grant to establish the Colorectal Cancer Control Program. This program offers no-cost screenings for colon cancer to Mainers age 50 and over who are underinsured or uninsured, and who earn less than 250% of federal income guidelines. If you are interested in that program you can click here find more information.