Am I at Risk for Colorectal Cancer? 
Cypress Fairbanks Medical Center Hospital 
Friday, 04 March 2011 
 
 
Colorectal cancer is one of the 5 most common cancers in men and women in the United States. While the exact cause of most colorectal cancers is unknown, there are certain known risk factors. A risk factor is something that affects your chance of developing a disease. Some risk factors, like smoking, can be controlled while others, such as your age, can't be changed.

Factors that may increase your risk of colon cancer include:

  • Older age. About 90 percent of people diagnosed with colon cancer are older than 50.
  • African-American race. African-Americans have a greater risk of colon cancer than do people of other races.
  • A personal history of colorectal cancer or polyps.
  • Inflammatory intestinal conditions. Long-standing inflammatory diseases of the colon, such as Crohn's disease, can increase your risk of colon cancer.
  • Family history of colon cancer and colon polyps. You're more likely to develop colon cancer if you have a parent, sibling, or child with the disease.
  • Low-fiber, high-fat diet.
  • A sedentary lifestyle. Getting regular physical activity may reduce your risk of colon cancer.
  • Diabetes. People with diabetes and insulin resistance may have an increased risk of colon cancer.
  • Obesity. People who are obese have an increased risk of colon cancer when compared with people of normal weight.
  • Smoking.
  • Alcohol.
  • Previous radiation therapy for cancer. Radiation therapy directed at the abdomen to treat previous cancers may increase the risk of colon cancer.

Free Colorectal Cancer Take-Home Screening Kit
Thanks to colorectal cancer screening, polyps can be found early and removed before they turn into cancer. Early detection is a key factor in improving survival rates from colorectal cancer. Call 877-763-9467 for free take-home screening kit. Supplies are limited. Limit two kits per household.