iBerkshires.com reports In the fight against colon cancer, the No. 1 goal is not making the diagnosis and treating the disease. It is prevention.

Although it is one of the easiest types of cancer to prevent through routine screening, over 50,000 people die from colon cancer every year in the U.S., making it the second-leading cause of cancer death in men and the third most common in women.

More than half of those deaths could be prevented by a relatively simple, painless screening examination called a colonoscopy — and yet, one in every three Americans over the age of 50 chooses to never undergo any type of colorectal cancer screening test.

Why are so many people deliberately risking their lives? Unfortunately, many of them are wrong in assuming that because they are feeling well, they are not experiencing any symptoms and they have no family history of colon cancer, that they are not at risk.

What they don’t realize is that by the time the more pronounced symptoms of colon cancer appear — which may include rectal bleeding, abdominal pain, changes in bowel habits and unexplained weight loss — an undiagnosed colon cancer may have already have moved to an advanced stage.

That is why we are so adamant about our patients following the prescribed recommendations for colon cancer screening.