Standard screening test: Fecal occult blood (low specificity), colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy (can detect dysplasia and stage 0 (carcinoma in situ), accuracy depends on bowel preparation, therapeutic (i.e. polyp excision).

  • Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death for males and the third most common cause of cancer death for females.
  • Since the mid-1980s, overall incidence of colorectal cancer declined for both sexes until the mid-1990s (decline was more prominent for females). Incidence rose through 2000 but declined slightly thereafter, most likely due to increased use of screening (identification and removal of precancerous polyps can reduce incidence). The decline in rates appears confined to older adults. Rates are increasing among young adults under the age of 50 years in Canada and the United States.

Additional facts & information:

5 Year Survival

  • Stage 0 – no data
  • Stages 1 & 2 – 91%
  • Stage 3 – 71%
  • Stage 4 – 13%

About 58% of cases are diagnosed at stage 3 or stage 4.