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In 2012 an estimated 22,500 Canadians were diagnosed with colorectal cancer and 9,100 died from it.
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death from cancer both in Nova Scotia and nationally.
Also known as colon cancer, colorectal cancer is a disease in which malignant cells grow in the tissue of the colon or rectum, forming tumors. In Nova Scotia, approximately 1,000 men and women are diagnosed every year, and about 350 of them will die from the disease.
The good news is that colon cancer is one of the most highly treatable cancers if caught early. The Canadian Cancer Society reports that Canada has one of the best colorectal cancer survival rates in the world – slightly lower than the US, but better than most of Europe.
Despite the high treatability, most Canadians have not had a screening test and are confusedabout how and when it should happen. The key to surviving colon cancer is early detection.