Colon Cancer Screening Specialist

Blair S. Lewis, MD, PC -  - Gastroenterologist

Blair S. Lewis, MD, PC

Gastroenterologist located in Upper East Side, New York, NY

As a leading gastroenterologist on Manhattan's Upper East Side, Dr. Lewis offers state-of-the-art colon cancer screening for patients throughout New York City to look for early signs of cancer so treatment can begin as soon as possible.

Colon Cancer Screening Q & A

by Blair S. Lewis, MD, PC

What is colon cancer screening?

Colon cancer screening is an evaluation designed to determine if you might be at risk for colon cancer. It involves a thorough personal and family medical history to look for risk factors for colon cancer, such as a family history of the disease or a personal history of smoking, followed by a colonoscopy to look inside your colon and your rectum to determine if fleshy growths called polyps are present. The American Cancer Society recommends screenings every 10 years beginning at age 50 if you don't have personal or family risk factors for the disease. If you do have risk factors for colon cancer, screening should begin at age 40 and take place every five years.

Does colon cancer cause symptoms?

In its very early stages, colon cancer typically causes no symptoms, which is one reason why routine screenings are so important. As the disease progresses, symptoms can include:

  • bloody stools

  • rectal bleeding

  • changes in the consistency of your bowel movements

  • changes in your bowel movement habits

  • persistent abdominal cramping and bloating

  • weakness

  • fatigue

  • unexplained weight loss

Are colonic polyps cancerous?

Not always; in fact, most polyps are not cancerous. However, because polyps typically cause no symptoms until they grow large enough to interfere with your bowel function, having regular colon cancer screenings is the only way to know if you have polyps that might be cancerous.

What if a polyp is found?

If your cancer screening finds one or more polyps, the polyps will be removed so they can be carefully evaluated under a microscope. If the polyp is found to be benign (non-cancerous), which is the case with most polyps, no more treatment is needed. If it's found to be cancerous, you'll undergo additional evaluations to determine what stage the cancer is in and other characteristics that can guide treatment.

Major Insurance Providers Accepted

If you have any questions, please contact our office.

1199SEIU
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Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey
Medicare
Multiplan PHCS
Multiplan, Inc.
Oscar Health Insurance Co.
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PHCS