When it comes to cancers, there are still a few out there that people don’t want to talk about in public. One of those is Colon Cancer (also known as Bowel cancer, colorectal cancer, or Rectal Cancer). While it’s not a fun topic, it’s one you need to be aware of signs and symptoms. If you notice any of the following symptoms, it’s time to talk to your doctor or get some testing scheduled. There is very affordable testing for colon cancer (and less invasive) that we’ll talk about later in this post.
Signs and Symptoms of Bowel Cancer
While colon cancer often occurs in older adults, it can occur at any age. I had my first scare of colon cancer at only twenty-six years old. I started noticing symptoms that concerned me, so I spoke with my doctor. According to the Mayo Clinic, colon cancer begins in the large intestine (colon). The colon is the final part of your digestive tract system.
Below are some of the significant symptoms of bowel cancer to keep an eye for:
- A considerable change in bowel movements (diarrhea, constipation, or any other persistent change)
- Blood in your stool or rectal bleeding with you wipe (never ignore this symptom!)
- Feeling that you are never fully able to empty your bowels (Tenesmus)
- Unexplained weight loss
- An overall feeling of fatigue or weakness
- Anemia caused by Iron Deficiency
- Persistent pain in your abdomen
- Narrow stools
Testing for Colon Cancer
After speaking with my doctor, we determined the best course of action would be to go through the testing process. I scheduled an appointment for a colonoscopy in the following weeks. Not only was this a ridiculously expensive procedure (even with insurance), the prep process was uncomfortable.
As someone with sensory issues, the liquid that you are required to drink before the procedure was the worst part. It tasted awful, but it did its job of cleaning out my bowels before the process. The procedure itself, though, was fine. Doctors put you under local anesthesia, so you won’t likely remember any of it. The colonoscopy takes approximately 30-60 minutes.
What is a Colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is an examination of the large intestines. It is done to evaluate the symptoms above and to check for polyps and cancer. Polyps are small, typically benign growths in your large intestine. During the procedure, the doctor will insert a small tube with a camera through your rectum to look for and removed polyps. If your doctor does find polyps, he will remove them and send them off for cancer screening. In most cases, these are benign but doctor’s advice to have them removed to prevent them from becoming cancerous. Those who are over the age of 50 or have a close relative with colorectal cancer or polyps be screened.
According to your insurance policy, a colonoscopy can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand. Mine was just over the $2000 mark, but I am thankful to have gone through it and have polyps removed.
Affordable Testing for Colon Cancer
When there is a concern for colon cancer, you want to screen as soon as possible. While a colonoscopy is needed to remove polyps, you can test for rectal cancer at home. Let’s Get Checked offers a Colon cancer screening kit for just $69. ON SALE FOR $55.22!!
The at-home Colon Cancer Screening Test detects blood in the stool, which may indicate the presence of cancerous or precancerous growths in the colon. This test looks for the biomarker of the Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT).
The bowel cancer screening kit comes discreetly to your home with detailed instructions on collecting a sample. Once you have obtained the stool sample, place it in the provided biohazard medical bag, and ship it in the return shipping envelope. The test can be dropped off at any UPS location.
The best days to test are Monday through Wednesday. Doing this guarantees your sample will arrive during the workweek at the lab. After testing has been completed (about two weeks wait), you will get an alert via your email, app, or text. If a positive result occurs, you will get a call from a nurse to discuss your results.
Keeping an eye out for Bowel Cancer
While I know I will have to back to get more colonoscopies throughout my life; this at-home test gives me results I can act on quickly. It gives me the peace of mind when I am worried, and the urgency for action if the results are positive. Use Code “TheMomKind” at check out to get an exclusive discount for the Colon Cancer Screening Kit today.