Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center

Conquering Cancer with Colonoscopies

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The Colon Question: When Was the Last Time You Had a Colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is one of the most important things you can do for your health. This screening saves lives by detecting precancerous lesions early, which can stop cancer from ever developing. Here’s how UT Southwestern can help you at every step.

Colonoscopy Screening at UT Southwestern

“Screening saves lives” – Roopa Vemulapalli, M.D., Associate Professor of Internal Medicine, discusses the process and importance of getting a colonoscopy.

Who: For people with an average risk of developing colorectal cancer, the American Cancer Society recommends having your first colon cancer screening at age 45. The frequency of recommended colonoscopies will be determined by the results of your initial screening. If you have a family history of colon cancer, you should discuss this with your physician to determine the appropriate time for your first colon cancer screening.

What: A colonoscopy is an exam that can detect polyps in the colon before they become cancer. It can also help detect other conditions that can lead to an increased risk for cancer. Colonoscopies can be done traditionally with a flexible camera or virtually using computed tomography (CT) scans. If a colonoscopy is not the preferred method, there are other options as well, including stool-based tests known as FIT or DNA (Cologuard) testing. Talk to your doctor and discuss your options.

Why: Colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer deaths. However, an early colonoscopy can detect precancerous polyps and stop cancers from ever forming. 

Make Screenings a Priority

Early detection of precancerous or cancerous cells is key in the fight against colorectal cancer.


For questions, call our Cancer Answer Line at 833-722-6237 or email canceranswerline@utsouthwestern.edu to learn more.


For scheduling, call 214-645-8300.