Colon Cancer—Don’t Stay in the Dark

Every Cause has a Color: Blue for Colon Cancer

Guess where I just got home from? That’s right, a colonoscopy…my first. Woo Hoo.

Here’s the deal. It is absolutely no big deal. Simple as that. HUGELY important test, the butt (pun intended) of many jokes, a jitters inducing manhood threatening (not sure why, but many men make it so in concept) test, and a LIFE SAVER. There is a reason that despite the joking and nervous laughter, every person who has actually had the test says “No biggie” or “SO much less dramatic than I expected” or something along those lines. The test itself is negligible and not even uncomfortable as you never feel anything. Katie Couric did it on TV and America watched–no wincing, no misery. My test wasn’t even done with twilight anesthesia, but full—I was completely asleep, the procedure was about 15 minutes, and then I was awake in mere moments (the anesthesia used was amazing–wide awake within minutes of stopping the administration. I walked down the hall following the doctor and back to the room where my clothes were). The prep the night before is an inconvenience, but even that was so much less than I’d anticipated. So you make several trips to the bathroom, and you’re pretty hungry by the time all is said and done. If THAT is the price to pay to catch a potential killer while it can still be handled…BRING IT ON!

DO NOT delay or put off getting this test. Your doctor will tell you when you should have it. If there is no family history of colo-rectal disease, you can likely wait until age 50. I had an intestinal condition earlier this year that made them want to do this early, so I was happy to go and get a clean bill of health. I don’t have to go do it again for seven years. And when it is time to do it then, I know it is no big deal. Colon cancer is brutal. My father-in-law was lost to it before I ever had the privilege of spending any time with him in this world, and that’s not fair. That was a time when we didn’t know as much about colonoscopies and catching the disease early. Don’t let your family lose you or anyone else, male or female, because if it can be caught, many many cases can be treated very effectively. Talk about it, joke about it, shudder at the concept (that’s all in your imagination, but shudder away), but do not procrastinate this one. I promise–the worst part of all is the flavor of the drink you drink the night before. When they invent Bourbon-flavored Magnesium Citrate, I’ll stand in line to get it done!

Some places to find out more:

Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Program

Susan Cohas Kasdas Colon Cancer Foundation

Colon Cancer Resource

National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance (Katie Couric’s Foundation)

Colon Cancer Alliance

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