Screening, early diagnosis reduce colorectal cancer rates
Decline in cancer rates in Israel is largely due to early diagnosis and treatment, thanks to more publicity and education about it.
Doctors (illustrative) Photo: REUTERS/Swoan Parker
Although Israel is fourth among Western countries in the prevalence of
colorectal cancer and 15th in the death rate from the tumor, the number of cases
here has declined in the last two decades. This improvement, by 17 percent in
men and 13 percent in women is largely due to early diagnosis and treatment,
thanks to more publicity and education about it.
However, there has been
no improvement in the Arab population, with the prevalence in colorectal cancer
in that sector remaining steady after a decline five years ago.
figures were provided on Monday by the Israel Cancer Association, which,
together with the Health Ministry and other countries around the world, marks
Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month in March.
Half of all older Israelis
undergo screening for the cancer – 41% by simple testing of occult blood in the
stools (which is 100% accurate), and the rest via invasive
According to the ministry’s Israel Cancer Registry and
National Center for Disease Control, 3,247 Israelis were diagnosed last year
with colorectal cancer. Among them 1,437 Jewish men, 1,392 Jewish women, 154
Arab men, 127 Arab women and 137 others.
Death rates rise significantly
after age 60, especially after 75, and in immigrants from Europe and the
Americas, in both men and women. Survival rates, largely due to early diagnosis
and treatment, is around 67% for both sexes. The number of deaths from this
widespread type of cancer was 1,363 in 2010, when the last figures were
On March 11, between 2 and 3 p,.m. on Army Radio, the ICA will
run an open line with experts available to answer questions from
Public service announcements will be broadcasted, and messages
published in newspaper throughout the month. Information can be obtained from
the ICA’s Telemeida line at 1-800-599-995.
A free seminar on the subject
will be held at ICA headquarters in Givatayim on March 12, starting at 9.30
According to recent research, the consumption of a lot of fiber from
vegetables, fruits and whole grains and pulses reduces the risk of colorectal
cancer. A sedentary life style and alcohol increases the risk.