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Mission Bay Run-Walk Highlights Need For Colon Cancer Screenings

Photo by Heidi de Marco/Kaiser Health News

Dr. Carin van Zyl talks to patient Jose Garcia Flores about his treatment options for his advanced stage colon cancer in October 2015.

A special run-walk along Mission Bay on Saturday will try to raise awareness about the need for colorectal cancer screenings.

A screening test for colorectal cancer could save your life.

That's the theme of a special run-walk beginning at 8:30 a.m., Saturday, at De Anza Cove at Mission Bay. The event aims to raise awareness about colorectal cancer and raise money to cover screenings for the uninsured.

Nearly 52,000 Americans died from colorectal cancer in 2013. It is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the country.

Studies indicate a colonoscopy can greatly reduce one's chance of dying from the disease.

Dr. Stonewall Anderson, president of the California Colorectal Cancer Coalition, said the annual Mission Bay run-walk has been raising money to screen the uninsured in San Diego since 2009.

"We’ve done about 225 free colonoscopies, found eight cancers, and seven of eight, apparently, are cured," he said.

There are several methods of screening for colorectal cancer, including stool-based tests that can be performed at home.

Health officials recommend periodic screenings beginning at age 50.

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