Your Road to Better Health

Because cancer is more easily treated and cured if detected early, the Baptist Cancer Center and American Cancer Society recommend the following cancer screning guidelines.

Recommended Breast Screenings for Women
Beginning at Age 20
  • Monthly - breast self-examination the week following your monthly menstrual period
  • Every 3 Years - a clinical breast exam performed by a medical professional
Beginning at Age 40
  • Yearly - annual mammogram
  • Yearly - a clinical breast exam performed by a medical professional
  • Monthly - continue breast self-examinations

Recommended Colon/Rectal Screenings for Men and Women
Beginning at Age 50, both men and women should follow one of these five screening schedules
  • Yearly - fecal occult blood test (FOBT) or fecal immunochecmical test (FIT). These are simple, non-invasive tests that can be done at home. The tests detect hidden blood in the stool, which can be an early indicator of colorectal disease.
  • Every 5 Years - flexible sigmoidoscopy. Physicians use a slender, lighted tube to spot colon abnormalities.
  • Every 5 Years - double contrast barium enema. In this x-ray procedure, medical professionals improve views of the colon with barium and air.
  • Every 10 Years - colonoscopy

Recommended Prostate Screenings for Men
Beginning at Age 50 (at age 40 if you have an immediate relative with prostate cancer)
  • Yearly - PSA (prostate-specific antigen) Blood Test. PSA is a protein produced by both normal and cancerous cells. A high PSA level can be a sign of cancer.
  • Yearly - digital rectal examination performed by a medical professional.

People who have an increased risk for certain cancers may need to follow a more frequent screening schedule and may need to begin screenings at an earlier age. Those with sympotoms that could be related to cancer should see their doctor right away.