Family History Can Play a Role When it Comes to Colon Cancer

It’s time to map out your family history.

Do you have a family history of cancer? Have you ever asked? What better time than now to sit down with your parents, siblings, or children to map out your family health history. 

According to cancer.org, As many as 1 in 5 people who develop colorectal cancer have other family members who have had it. People with a history of colorectal cancer in a first-degree relative (parent, sibling, or child) are at increased risk. The risk is even higher if that relative was diagnosed with cancer when they were younger than 45, or if more than one first-degree relative is affected.

Having family members who have had adenomatous polyps (the kind of polyps that can become cancerous) is also linked to a higher risk of colon cancer. 

If you have a family history of adenomatous polyps or colorectal cancer, talk with your doctor about the possible need to begin screening before age 50. 
 

Mikala Harden