BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Clara Carruth makes regular follow up visits to the doctor. Clara is a 17-year survivor of colon cancer. Doctors caught her cancer early. Clara's dad wasn't so lucky. Her mom all but forced him to get a colonoscopy, but by then it was too late. According to Clara, "They found a tumor the size of an orange. So they removed a large portion of his colon and he ended up passing away."
Colonoscopy is one of the few screenings that can actually prevent cancer. That's because the procedure makes it possible to spot and remove polyps before they are cancer. Yet, Dr. Charles Berggreen says too many people remain blissfully ignorant. Making colon cancer the "second-leading cause of cancer death in women, third-leading cause in men and an overall lifetime incidents of colon cancer in the general population of 50 percent."
Many people cringe at the thought of having a camera-tipped scope placed in the colon. Even though, the way it's done, there's no pain. Most patients are lightly sedated. Berggreen says there's another reason some people avoid colonoscopies. "Used to be you drank a big gallon of this salty, lemonade-like solution and it was hard to get that whole gallon down. Now there's less volume and its not as difficult,"