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Colorectal Cancer Detection: One of the Best Weapons in Your Health Toolbox

Regular colorectal cancer screening is one of the most powerful tools against colorectal cancer – and has no out-of-pocket cost for employees with an Emory medical plan. Talk to your provider about when to schedule an exam.

Regular colorectal cancer screening by colonoscopy is one of the most powerful tools against colorectal cancer.

A colonoscopy is the examination of the colon and part of the small intestine.Using a small camera on a flexible tube, doctors screen for polyps or colon cancer and help diagnose symptoms such as unexplained diarrhea, abdominal pain, or blood in the stool.

This screening can help find cancer or pre-cancerous (polyps) in people who have no signs or symptoms. Since it can take 10 years or more for polyps to develop into cancer, regular screenings can help prevent the disease.

If you are 45 or older and have an average risk of colon cancer (no colon cancer risk factors other than age), your doctor may recommend a colonoscopy every 10 years or sometimes sooner.

Prevention through colorectal cancer screening is the best we can do, as some people with colorectal cancer have no signs or symptoms, ”said Christina Wu, gastroenterologist and medical oncologist at the Wi Ship Cancer Institute.

“If you are over 45 years old or if a family member has had colon cancer, check with your doctor to see if a screening is right for you.” If you are covered by an Emory medical plan, there is no out-of-pocket cost for a colonoscopy, which is considered preventative care.

It is 100% covered when in-network providers are used through Tier 1 and Tier 2 for the Aetna HSA and POS plans; out-of-network coverage will be subject to plan provisions after the deductible has been met. A colonoscopy is also 100% covered if you have the Kaiser Permanente Plan.