LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)– Colorectal cancer, also known as colon cancer, is the third leading cause of cancer related deaths among men and women.

This form of cancer is a diagnosis for uncontrollable growth of cells in the colon or rectum. These abnormal growths are called polyps. If not treated as soon as possible, the cells become cancerous. Dr. Matthew Boudreaux says this is why colonoscopies are important.

“There are other test but they don’t test you for polyps. They test you for cancer cells. You need to prevent someone by doing a colonoscopy and catching it in the polyp stage to remove it,” he said.

People with no family history of colon cancer are recommended to get screened at age 45. The recommended screening age used to be 50, but incidents of colon cancer in younger people are becoming more prevalent.

Dr. Boudreaux says it’s uncertain what causes most colon cancers. However, he suggests weight loss, no smoking, less alcohol, and less red meat to decrease risks of colorectal cancer.