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Ask The Expert: 7 Tips for Living with a Cancer Diagnosis

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Ask The Expert: 7 Tips for Living with a Cancer Diagnosis. (Photo: KUTV)

(KUTV) We have to top 7 tips to answer what you need to know about living with a cancer diagnosis.

Celeste Adams, Nurse Navigator for the Intermountain Southwest Cancer Center gives Mary Nickles some tips about what help is out there.

  • Why is screening important?

Screening is important because it is always better to deal with a problem when it is smaller than when it is bigger. When it’s caught early, treatment can be easier, less invasive, less expensive and chances of cure can be higher. (In terms of colorectal cancer, screening and removal of any polyps can actually prevent them from turning into cancer.)

  • Who should be screened?

Of course your personal situation may cause your doctor to suggest a different schedule, but in general:

Women should start having Pap smears when they turn 21 and then follow up every 3-5 years depending on the test.

Women should have mammograms starting at about 40

Men and women should have a colonoscopy when they turn 50 and then follow up as suggested.

And at any time if you have any skin bumps or marks that look odd-get in and get it checked out!

  • What if I’m nervous about being screened? What can I expect?

Most insurances cover the cost of screening, so don’t let that stop you. And these aren’t as bad as you imagine. You are worth it!

Or We’ve seen some otherwise healthy 65 year olds, ready to enjoy retirement, but who develop problems that send them in to get their very first colonoscopy and find out that they have a big mass. Chances are good that if they had done the screening test at 50, those little polyps could have been removed and they could be out golfing rather than visiting us for surgery and treatment.

  • Or This is good, but is there something we could do to prevent cancer?

Sunscreen! Probably the most important thing to do would be to quit smoking.

Besides lung cancer, smoking significantly increases your risk of almost every other cancer. Up to 25x the risk of non-smokers! Talk with your doctor or check out Waytoquit.org for online, text or phone support, tips and even medications.

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