Living Well

Colorectal Cancer Screening Options

Last updated: Feb 16, 2010

"All people by age 50 are at average risk for colorectal cancer and should be screened for the disease," according to Farshad Abir, MD, colorectal surgeon at Summit Medical Group. "If you have inflammatory bowel disease or other risk factors for colorectal cancer, you should begin screening at an earlier age."

Summit Medical Group and the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommend:

  • Screening for adults aged 50 to 75 years using
    • Fecal occult blood testing
    • Flexible sigmoidoscopy 
    • Colonoscopy  
  • Against routine screening for colorectal cancer in adults 76 to 85 years of age; however, screening might be necessary in certain patients
  • Against screening for colorectal cancer in adults age 85 years or more 

The USPSTF has concluded that there is not yet enough evidence to support the benefits and risks of computed tomographic colonography and fecal DNA testing as methods for colorectal cancer screening.

Ask your doctor about starting colorectal cancer screening earlier and more often if you have risk factors, including a:

  • Personal history of colorectal cancer or adenomatous polyps 
  • Personal history of chronic inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis)
  • Strong family history of colorectal cancer or polyps (cancer or polyps in a parent, sibling, or child [these are first-degree relatives]) age 60 years or younger, or a history of colorectal cancer or polyps in 2 or more first-degree relatives of any age)
  • Family history of hereditary colorectal cancer syndromes such as familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) or hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer (HNPCC)

Ask your physician about your risk for colorectal cancer, what test might be right for you, and how often you should be screened.

For more information or to schedule an appointment with one of our expert physicians,
Adam Barrison, MD or J. Scott Gillin, MD, FACP,
for an examination and screening,
please call Summit Medical Group Gastroenterology
at 908-277-8940.

Summit Medical Group Colorectal Surgery 
treats a variety of illnesses and injuries of the colon, rectum, and anus.
Our highly qualified surgeon, Farshad Abir, MD
has expertise in open as well a laparoscopic surgery.
For more information or an appointment, please call 980-277-8950.


Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. United States Preventive Services Task Force screening for colorectal cancer recommendation statement. Accessed March 1, 2010.