Nurse spreads cancer screening awareness after the procedure saves his life
FARGO, N.D. – A registered nurse at Essentia Health says he’s alive thanks to a routine procedure that detects colon cancer.
Aaron Lund wants everyone to know that colonoscopies save lives. He knows that because last year his doctor used the procedure to find stage 3 colon cancer.
At 33, Lund doesn’t fit into a high risk category, but Dr. Kimberly Kolkhorst says because colorectal cancer rates are rising sharply, the minimum screening age might eventually have to be changed.
“There’s a little bit of fear, but I have to say that the prepping and even the procedure itself is worth the 15 minutes to save your life because I’m here today because I got it done,” Lund said.
“Patients that were born around 1990 versus those that were born around 1950, we’re actually seeing that the rates of colon cancer have doubled and that the rates of rectal cancer have quadrupled. And, so, there’s been some effort to decrease that age from 50 right now to 45,” Kolkhorst said.
Kolkhorst says the higher cancer rates are likely related to poor diet, lack of exercise and obesity.
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.