The United States Preventative Services Task Force recommends that every citizen aged between 50 and 75 be tested, thus prolonging the lives of 60 % of those affected. Those over this age can request a test. Detection can be done by testing stools for the presence of blood. This is done either using the chemical guaiac or by seeking for antibodies. Somewhat more invasive is a sigmoidoscopy, i.e. the lower bowel is examined using a flexible tube. A colonoscopy is a more extensive version of this, but searches the whole colon and may involve the removal of any suspicious polyps. This would normally be a follow up to other tests. In some cases a barium enema is used and the results x-rayed. In some cases a complete stool is sent for analysis. There is continued research on this topic.
Because this condition is so prevalent in American society as much as possible to cut its incidence and severity,y as a life threatening condition. This can be done be early detection so that any polyps can be removed before they become cancerous. Therefore it is necessary that all those aged 50 – 70 have regular checks – perhaps every two years. If this is to be achieved the subject will need publicity, education, central organization and funding. Another area that requires public education would be in the area of diet. Americans tend to consume a high fat, high dairy food diet. Something similar to the ‘5 a day’ campaign in the United Kingdom -, that is the promotion of the idea that everyone needs to eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables each day. ( NHS Choices , 5 a Day).