Skip to Content

More@Mercy banner

Published on July 15, 2013

The best colon cancer screening?

Dr. Mervyn Danilewitz explains why you need a colonoscopy.

Mervyn DanilewitzMany people avoid having a colonoscopy because they’re scared, says Mervyn Danilewitz, MD, a gastroenterologist at Mercy Philadelphia.

“But it really isn’t that bad. Colon screenings have actually gotten much easier to tolerate,” says Dr. Danilewitz.

Colorectal cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in this country, but it can be prevented. “Most patients who do have pre-cancerous polyps can have them successfully removed at the time of colonoscopy if we detect them early,” says Dr. Danilewitz. “The earlier they are detected, the better.”

Screening Know-How:

  • Those without a family history of colon cancer, and with no symptoms, should start screenings at age 50, and be screened at least every 10 years.
  • New guidelines recommend that African-Americans without a family history of colon cancer have their first screening at age 45.
  • “If a parent or sibling had colon cancer, you should start your screenings 10 years earlier than the age your family member was at the time of diagnosis,” advises Dr. Danilewitz.
Share Page

A Member of Trinity Health

© 2018 Mercy Health System   |   All Rights Reserved.   |   Privacy Policy   |   Non-Discrimination Policy