March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month

March 05, 2020

In March, cancer groups, hospitals and communities focus attention on preventing, treating and curing colorectal cancer. From October 2018 to September 2019, Wisconsin had 3,246 inpatient admissions for cancer of the colon or rectum and 40,161 outpatient visits.
Excluding skin cancers, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women in the U.S. The American Cancer Society’s estimates for the number of colorectal cancer cases in the U.S. for 2020 are:
  • 104,610 new case of colon cancer
  • 43,340 new cases of rectal cancer
  • 53,200 deaths to colorectal cancer
When colorectal cancer is found at an early stage before it has spread, the five-year relative survival rate is about 90%. But only about four out of 10 colorectal cancers are found at this early stage. When cancer has spread outside the colon or rectum, survival rates are lower.
Unfortunately, about one in three people in the U.S. who should get tested for colorectal cancer have never been screened. This may be because they don't know that regular testing could save their lives from this disease, or due to things like cost and health insurance coverage issues.
The heat map shows where the visits are coming from (using rate per 1,000).

This story originally appeared in the March 05, 2020 edition of WHA Newsletter