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Giant Colon Tour Coming to Pen Centre Jan. 22 and 23

Posted Jan 11th, 2010

Explore the Giant Colon and Get the Inside Truth about Colon Cancer!  

What is 40 feet long, eight feet high and pink all over? ColonCancerCheck is bringing the Giant Colon to the Pen Centre in St. Catharines on Jan. 22 and 23 in the Sears Court, to help raise awareness about the importance of screening for colorectal cancer among Ontarians aged 50 and over.

The multimedia exhibit is a one-of-a-kind adventure to explore all the features of a colon, while learning more about how to keep yours healthy and reduce your risk of developing colorectal cancer. Learn from Niagara Health System, Niagara Region Public Health and Canadian Cancer Society clinical experts and volunteers on hand to provide health information and hand-outs.

Stop by the Official Launch of the Giant Colon exhibit to hear from leading physicians and a patient’s treatment experience.

Date: Official Launch of Giant Colon is Friday, January 22 at Noon (exhibit is open Jan. 22 and 23 during mall hours) 

Location: Sears Court, Pen Centre, Glendale Avenue, St. Catharines

Frequently Asked Questions

What is colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer is the second deadliest cancer in Canada. Some people aren't even sure what it is other than it is related to an unmentionable area of the body. Colon cancer develops in the large intestine, generally from tiny growths inside the colon called polyps. Over time, some polyps can become cancerous. The term colorectal refers to both colon cancer and rectal cancer.

How common is colorectal cancer?
Ontario has one of the highest rates of colorectal cancer in the world. The Canadian Cancer Society estimated that in 2009, 3,300 Ontarians would die from the disease and 8,100 Ontarians would be newly diagnosed.

What is the cure rate for colorectal cancer?
There is a 90% chance of curing colorectal cancer if it is detected early through regular screening. The chance of curing colorectal cancer is only 10% if it is detected at an advanced stage. This is why regular screening is so important.

What are the screening methods?
There are various methods of screening for colorectal cancer. Because there are little or no symptoms of colorectal cancer, early screening is doubly important. The screening methods that are part of the ColonCancerCheck program are:

  • Fecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT) - The FOBT is a simple, self-administered test that can be done in the privacy of your own home, free of charge. It can detect the presence of trace amounts of blood in your stool. A positive test result doesn't necessarily mean that you have colorectal cancer but does require follow-up to find out if you do have colorectal cancer. Approximately 10% of people with a positive FOBT are found to have cancer during a follow-up colonoscopy.It is recommended that everyone 50 years and older should be screened with an FOBT every two years.
  • Colonoscopy - A colonoscopy is an examination of the lining of your rectum and colon using a long flexible tube with a camera on the end. It is recommended for individuals at increased risk, such as those who have one or more close relatives (parent, sibling or child) who had colorectal cancer and those with a positive FOBT result.

Who is at risk of developing colorectal cancer?
If you are a male or female who is aged 50 years or older, with no family history of colorectal cancer, you are considered to be at average risk and should be screened using a take-home Fecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT) every two years. Please speak to your healthcare provider about screening.

You have an increased risk of developing colorectal cancer if you have one or more close family members (parent, sibling, child) who have had colorectal cancer, or you have had a positive FOBT result. It is recommended that you get screened using colonoscopy at 50 or 10 years earlier than the age of the diagnosis of your parent or sibling. Please speak to your healthcare provider about screening.

I don't have a healthcare provider. How do I get screened?
If you don't have a health care provider you can speak to a representative from the ColonCancerCheck program by calling 1-800-410-5853.  They will provide you with details on how to get screened.

Learn more about colorectal screening by going to one of these websites:;

For more information, contact

Caroline Bourque Wiley
Consultant, Public Affairs
905-378-4647, ext. 43113

Niagara Health System