Primary and secondary prevention of colorectal cancer: An evidence-based review

Introduction: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in men and women [1]. The American Cancer Society forecast for 2017 is for 95,520 new cases of colon cancer and 39,910 new cases of rectal cancer in the United States. Although CRC morbidity and mortality rates in the United States have been steadily declining in the past 20 years, the rates remain high relative to those in many other industrial nations [1]. There are a number of risk factors that have been associated with CRC, including inactivity, obesity/overweight, nutrition, smoking, and excessive alcohol consumption [2]. The decrease in overall rates has been attributed, in part, to improved primary and secondary prevention efforts, including smoking prevention and cessation programs, nutritional counseling, and the use of routine screening tests, as well as access to better treatment (tertiary prevention) [3]. Primary and secondary prevention strategies can be used by primary care providers to reduce the rate at which new disease occurs as well as disease burden as reflected in morbidity, mortality, financial costs, and diminished quality of life.

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Gonzalez, S. J., Mejia de Grubb, M. C., & Levine, R. S. (2017). Primary and secondary prevention of colorectal cancer: An evidence-based review. Family Medicine and Community Health5(1), 78-84.