Dress in Blue on Friday for colon cancer awareness

March 03, 2021

National Dress in Blue Day is Friday, March 5.

(Paducah, Ky.) March 3, 2021 — Blue is a popular color for Kentucky sports fans, but blue means something different the first Friday of March.

National Dress in Blue Day on Friday, March 5, shines a national spotlight on colon cancer. By wearing blue, we can help raise awareness about risk factors for colon cancer and steps that can be taken to prevent it.

Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the nation, with the mortality rate in Kentucky among the highest, killing nearly 900 people each year. Colon cancer rates in our region are higher than the national average, even though it may be prevented or cured if detected early with regular screenings.

The American Cancer Society recommends that adults 45 and older should be screened with a colonoscopy. Screenings should start at 40, if you have a family history of colon cancer or polyps.

Risk factors associated with colon cancer include family history, a diet low in vegetables, excessive alcohol use, tobacco use, obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. Colon cancer symptoms include rectal bleeding, change in bowel frequency or stool size, unexplained anemia or weight loss, fatigue, persistent abdominal pain and frequent vomiting.

According to the Colon Cancer Prevention Project website:

  • When detected early, colon cancer is up to 90 percent curable.
  • Kentucky leads the nation in colorectal cancer incidence in individuals, both over and under age 50.
  • Though there are several symptoms to watch for, early colon cancer often has no symptoms.

To check to see if you are at risk for colon cancer, take the colon cancer health risk assessment on the Baptist Health website at: