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Regional Cancer Partnership of Illinois
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Cancer Screening Guidelines:

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Breast Cervical Colon Prostate


Colorectal Cancer Screening:

Average Risk
Starting at age 50, those who are at average risk for colorectal cancer should have one of the five screenings every year:

  • Fecal occult blood test (FOBT) or fecal immunochemical test (FIT) every year or;

  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years or;

  • FOBT or FIT every year with a flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years or;

  • Double-contract barium enema every five years or;

  • Colonoscopy every 10 years.

Moderate Risk
Moderate risk are those who have a family history of colorectal cancer in a first degree relative or a personal history of polyps or colorectal cancer.

Colorectal cancer in first degree relative under age 55 or two first degree relatives:

  • Colonoscopy at age 40 or 10 years before earliest case in the family, whichever is earlier.

Colorectal cancer in first degree relative over the age of 55:

  • Colonoscopy at age 50 or 10 years before the age of the case or whichever is earlier.

Personal history of large or multiple polyps:

  • Colonoscopy one year after removal of polyps.  Every year if polyps recur or five years if normal.

Personal history of colorectal cancer:

  • Colonoscopy one year after resection.  Three years if normal, five years if still normal.

High Risk
High risk are those with a hereditary or genetic disposition for colorectal cancer and those with inflammatory bowel disease.

Family history of Familial adenomatous polyposis:

  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy and consideration for genetic counseling and testing beginning at age 12 to 14.  Repeat sigmoidoscopy every one to two years.

Family history of hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer:

  • Colonoscopy and consideration for genetic counseling and testing beginning at age 21 to 40.  Repeat colonoscopy every two years and then yearly at age 40.

Inflammatory bowel disease:

  • Colonoscopy beginning at age 15 for left-sided colitis and age 8 for pancolitis.  Repeat every one to two years.

The information provided are guidelines and not meant to be used as medical advice or replace the advice of your health care provider.  It is important to discuss colorectal cancer with your health care provider.

PO Box 19667 Springfield, Illinois 62794-9677, 217-545-7493
Our mission is cancer control, prevention and education in central Illinois.