Editor’s note: The following letter refers to March as Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. While March has come and gone, the need to screen for and be vigilant about warning signs continues throughout the year, as the letter writer can attest.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention states “Colorectal cancer screening saves lives. If everyone aged 50 years old or older were screened regularly, up to 60 percent of deaths from this cancer could be avoided”.

The story of my personal journey with stage IV colon cancer was included in your edition of December 19, 2007. Fortunately my wife and I have been able to continue the journey and it has now been over five years since I was first diagnosed with the disease in November, 2003.

I am told that I should now consider my cancer as a chronic disease to be treated but not cured. And new treatments and chemo-therapies continue to be developed. The earlier the disease is detected, the better the chance of a favorable outcome. I would encourage everyone to take the advice given regarding cancer screening. Wayne Cooke


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