Supporting Colorectal Cancer Charities

About Colon Cancer

  • Colorectal Cancer (CRC) is the second most common cause of death from cancer for Canadian men and women combined.
  • Yet CRC is a highly treatable cancer if it is detected early and it is up to 90 per cent preventable with timely and thorough testing or “CRC screening”. Unfortunately as it stands today, nearly half of those diagnosed find out too late.
  • The majority of CRCs begin as benign growths in the lining of the colon called adenomatous polyps. Over the years, these polyps grow in size and number, thereby increasing the risk that the cells in the polyps will become cancerous. Timely removal of these growths – easily done during a colonoscopy – will prevent CRC from developing. It is important to identify and remove these polyps as soon as possible.
  • Polyp removal is usually done during a colonoscopy and the patient is sedated during the procedure. Recovery is very quick and usually pain-free. Polyps are sent for a biopsy and tested for any malignancies.
  • Anyone 50 and up should be screened regardless of family history.  Screening should start earlier for those considered at increased risk of CRC, including:
    • People with a family history of CRC
    • People who have already been diagnosed with polyps
    • People who have inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease

Facts about Colorectal Cancer

  • Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of death from cancer in men and women combined.
  • Ontario has one of the highest rates of colorectal cancer in the world. We don’t know why.
  • In 2013, an estimated 23,900 Canadians were diagnoses with colorectal cancer, and 9,200 died from it. This represents 13% of all new cancer cases and 12% of all cancer deaths in 2013
  • In Ontario alone, 8,700 people were diagnosed and 3,450 people died of colorectal cancer in 2012.
  • 1 in 15 people will develop colorectal cancer during their lifetime, and in 1 in 28 will die from it.
  • Every day, 65 Canadians are diagnosed with colorectal cancer, and 25 die from it.
  • As physicians, we believe that 90% of colorectal cancers are preventable if people follow the current guidelines for screening and prevention.

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