Did you ever put off doing a task or getting a test and later wished youâd just gotten it over with? If youâre a man with Medicare, nowâs the time to talk with your doctor about whether you should get screened for prostate cancer, for colorectal cancer, or for both. Screening tests can find cancer early, when treatment works best.
Donât put off screenings if youâre worried about the costâif youâre a man 50 or over, Medicare covers a digital rectal exam once every 12 months. Also, Medicare covers a variety of colorectal cancer screeningsâlike the fecal occult blood test, flexible sigmoidoscopy, or colonoscopyâand you pay nothing for most tests.
Did you know that prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, second only to lung cancer in the number of cancer deaths? Youâre at a higher risk for getting prostate cancer if youâre a man 50 or older, are African-American, or have a father, brother, or son who has had prostate cancer.
Colorectal cancer is also common among menâin fact, itâs the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States among cancers that affect both men and women. If everyone 50 to 75 got screened regularly, we could avoid as many as 60% of deaths from this cancer.
In most cases, colorectal cancer develops from precancerous polyps (abnormal growths) in the colon or rectum. Fortunately, screening tests can find these polyps, so you can get them removed before they turn into cancer. If youâre 50 or older, or have a personal or family history of colorectal issues, make sure you get screened regularly for colorectal cancer.
June is Menâs Health Month, a perfect time for you (and the men in your life) to take the steps to live a safer, healthier life. Watch our video on how Medicare has you covered on colorectal cancer screenings, and visit the Menâs Health Network website on Menâs Health Month for more information.