2 Giant Inflatable Colons Help Intermountain Health Cancer Specialists Raise Colon Cancer Awareness

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Intermountain Health cancer specialists are redoubling their efforts to raise awareness of colon cancer this month in a unique public awareness campaign called Let's Get to the Bottom of Colon Cancer.

Two giant inflatable colons — nicknamed Collin and Colette — are traveling with Intermountain cancer experts to 23 hospitals, clinics and community centers in Utah and Idaho over 29 days throughout March.

As part of National Colon Cancer Awareness Month, this interactive campaign aims to bring critical awareness about colon cancer and the importance of life-saving screenings in a fun, visual and practical way.

The Intermountain Let's Get to the Bottom of Colon Cancer Inflatable Colon Tour kicked off March 1 at Intermountain McKay-Dee Hospital in Acton.

This is the second year for this unique public awareness tour, which is a unique opportunity to walk through 12-foot, 113-pound inflatable colons. They depict the different stages of colon cancer, starting with the initial stage of a precancerous colon polyp.

The two giant inflatables will make their way through Utah and Idaho for various events throughout March.

“This tour is an opportunity for our patients and their families to spread awareness throughout our communities about the importance of knowing their colon cancer risk and moving forward by completing the best screening test for them,” said Nathan Merriman, MD, Medical Director of Gastrointestinal and Digestive Health at Intermountain Health. said. “Colon cancer is preventable, treatable and beatable. In fact, colon cancer has a 90% survival rate if detected early.”

The American Cancer Society estimates that 53,000 Americans will die from colon cancer in 2024, making it the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States.

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“One alarming trend is that the incidence rate of colon cancer continues to increase each year in people under the age of 55,” said Kyle Eliason, a gastroenterologist at Intermountain McKay Dee Hospital in Acton. “Due to delays in diagnosis, young people are often diagnosed with advanced cancers, driving home that prevention is the best strategy to beat cancer.”

Merriman emphasizes that the goal is for the general population to take control of their health, and that individual risk factors such as a family history of bowel cancer, inherited genetic disorders or certain lifestyle choices can increase a person's chance of developing it. Colon cancer.

Screening is the only way to detect colon cancer. People at average risk of colon cancer should start getting screened at age 45, Intermountain doctors say.

2 Giant Inflatable Colons Help Intermountain Health Cancer Specialists Raise Colon Cancer Awareness
Photo: Ground Picture/Shutterstock.com

Colonoscopy, which examines the inside of the colon, is the best method for screening for colon cancer, precancerous growths, and polyps. If an abnormal mass or polyp is identified during an outpatient procedure, the doctor will identify the best treatment, which includes removing it during the procedure.

“Finding and removing early growths during colonoscopy can prevent cancer from developing,” Merriman said. “Delays in screening can lead to late cancer detection. A screening can literally save a life and protect a family. We need everyone's help to work together to prevent colon cancer across our communities.”

For a full inflatable colon tour, click Here. For more information on colonoscopy, click here Here.

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