Instead, Silverio’s prognosis is good, and he won’t need to undergo another colonoscopy for three years.
It’s important for patients to continue with colonoscopies and other preventive screenings during the pandemic, Dr. Abadie says. In general, colonoscopies start at age 50, though patients with a family history of colon cancer may need to start undergoing the procedure at an earlier age.
Some patients may need to receive colonoscopies more frequently than others depending on risk factors such as a family history of colon cancer and the size and types of polyps identified during previous colonoscopies.
Unfortunately, Dr. Abadie says, the symptoms of colon cancer may not be evident early on, which can allow the cancer to spread and become more difficult to treat.
“In some cases, when patients start having symptoms, it’s too late,” Dr. Abadie says. “That’s why, even during the pandemic, it’s so important to be screened.”