Get Checked! Early Cancer Detection Saves Lives
Centegra Health System and the Gavers Community Cancer Foundation remain committed to raising your awareness about the importance of early cancer detection. The Get Checked! Program provides information about lifestyle changes and guidelines for routine screenings that can make a big difference in your life.
Cancer has a measurably higher survival rate when caught in its earliest stages, but that can occur only if you are vigilant about conducting self-exams, having regular physician visits and following guidelines recommended for testing and screenings.
Self-exams and screenings should be a part of your regular personal routine. They are the first line of defense in detecting cancer early.
Pay attention to your body. Breast, cervical, colorectal, testicular, skin and prostate cancers are among those conditions most likely to be found either through self-exams or routine screening.
Self-exams, lifestyle risks, warning signs: They are essential to saving your life!
- Educate yourself about when and how you should be screened for cancer
- Schedule an appointment with a physician for an annual physical
- Start regular self-exams
If you have a family history of cancer or suffer from unusual symptoms, such as changes in warts or moles, lumps in breasts, change in bowel or bladder habits or you have a sore that does not heal, tell your doctor. We can help you Find A Physician or contact Centegra’s Physician Referral Line at 877-CENTEGRA (236.8347).
Throughout the year, the Get Checked! program offers opportunities for cancer screenings and education.
Practice a healthy lifestyle to reduce your risk of some cancers. Take care of your physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual needs.
Recommended Screening Guidelines
- Choose a low-fat diet
- Eat five small servings of fruits and vegetables daily
- Exercise for 30 minutes, five times a week
- Avoid tobacco products
- Use alcohol in moderation
- Avoid prolonged exposure to the sun
- Laugh often
- Allow time to relax
Depending on your age, cancer screenings should also be included in your annual check-up. Consult your physician if you have questions or are in a high-risk group for a particular cancer.
Beginning at age 20, a Breast Self-Exam (BSE) is recommended monthly for women. Any breast changes should be reported to your physician. For women in their 20s and 30s, Clinical Breast Exams (CBE) are recommended annually. Beginning at age 40, a yearly mammogram and a yearly Clinical Breast Exam are recommended.
Women should begin testing for breast cancer earlier if they are at an increased risk of developing cancer.
Beginning at age 16, a testicular self-exam is recommended monthly. A clinical exam should be a part of a man’s annual physical.
Beginning at age 20 or three years after the onset of sexual activity (whichever comes first), women should have yearly pelvic exams with a Pap Test based on physician recommendation.Talk to your physician about the type of Pap Test and follow-up care you may need based on your individual healthcare history.
Beginning at age 20, examine your skin monthly to note any changes or new growths. Ask your physician to examine your skin as part of your annual physical exam.
Screenings to Add at Age 50 and older
Colon and Rectal Cancer
Beginning at age 50, men and women should have a yearly fecal occult blood test (FOBT) and digital rectal exam (DRE) plus flexible sigmoidoscopy (FS) every 5 years or colonoscopy every 10 years. Consult your physician for other options.
Beginning at age 50, men should have a yearly prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test and a digital rectal exam (DRE) as part of their annual physical exam. Men who are high risk may need to begin tests earlier. Talk to your physician about your family history.
Advances in Screenings
Tobacco products are the cause of 95 percent of all lung cancers. Smoking cessation and avoidance of all tobacco-related products are the best methods for decreasing your chances of getting lung cancer.Currently, there is no widespread lung cancer screening test available to the general public. The National Cancer Institute is conducting a national lung screening trial to study the effectiveness of a chest X-ray versus a spiral CT scan.
2012 Breast Cancer Awareness Insert
This 16-page special section was featured in a local newspaper October 3. Pink Tab 2012 FINAL