Older Americans getting scared out of colonoscopies, survey finds

Feb 01, 2011

Older Americans could be worried about colonoscopies

Consumers older than 50 are highly likely to forgo getting a colonoscopy because they are scared of the procedure or the outcome, according to the results of a survey released today by the Colon Cancer Alliance.

More than 70 percent of those surveyed said they avoided the procedure - which is critical to the early detection of colon cancer - primarily out of fear, the alliance stated.

Andrew Spiegel, the Colon Cancer Alliance's CEO, said it's important for Americans to overcome their fears.

"Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. More than 142,000 Americans will be diagnosed with colon and rectal cancer this year, yet by getting tested, it could be prevented," he said.

As well, about 60 percent of respondents said their primary source of information about colonoscopy was the internet, leaving the door open to potential misrepresentations of the procedure.

Experts say preventative care in general is an easy way to improve one's health and avoid more serious complications of many diseases, which could in turn help save money on life insurance.

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