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The Truth about At-Home Colon Cancer Screening Kits

It’s no secret: Americans are becoming more responsible for their own healthcare. It is more important than ever that you know the best option for your healthcare—affordable, quality care that gives you trusted results.

A solid preventive healthcare plan should include routine colon cancer screenings. Though there are a lot of options for colon cancer screenings on the market, there is only one that is effective, affordable, and life-saving.

Your gastrointestinal system is complex, and colon cancer is a serious disease. Combating the disease requires early detection and treatment, so there’s no substitute for a screening colonoscopy performed by a gastroenterologist.

At-home colon cancer screening kits have recently grown in popularity. After all, they seem to make screenings as simple as going to the bathroom, and are covered by insurance, but what you don’t know is that these “easy” screenings could end up costing you more—more time, more money, and more risk.

5 reasons why at-home screening kits can’t replace a colonoscopy by a highly-qualified gastroenterologist:

1. At-home screening kits are not reliable.
Despite the bold claims on advertisements for these kits, the fine print tells a different story. False positives occur often (13%), and samples are easily contaminated.

2. At-home screening kits are not accurate.
At-home screening kits have been shown to miss potentially cancerous polyps 68% of the time and nearly 10% of known colon cancers go undetected.

3. At-home screening kits do nothing to prevent colon cancer.
An at-home colon cancer screening kit can only tell you (correctly or incorrectly) that you may or may not have cancer. It is merely a tool for potential detection. During a colonoscopy, a gastroenterologist can remove both cancerous and benign polyps—offering both detection and prevention.

4. At-home screening kits don’t give you a complete picture of your colon health.
An at-home screening colon cancer screening kit can’t assess your overall colon health. A gastroenterologist can use your colonoscopy to assess the general health of your colon, alerting you to any conditions or abnormalities that may need treatment.

5. Ultimately, at-home screening kits could cost you more money.
What will happen if you get a positive result from your home screening kit? There will be nobody there to immediately address your concerns. Any questions you have won’t be answered until you see a gastroenterologist. They will recommend a diagnostic colonoscopy, and while screening colonoscopies are often covered by insurance plans, diagnostic colonoscopies generally are not. Having “used up” your preventive health benefit on the home kit, you may have to pay out of pocket for any diagnostic procedures.

Don’t gamble with your health. An at-home screening kit could end up costing you more money – and possibly your life. To feel confident in the results and your care, schedule a screening colonoscopy with an expert gastroenterologist instead.

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