“Blue March” promotes screening for colon cancer


The Prince’s Government and the Princess Grace Hospital Centre continue their commitment to raise awareness of colorectal cancer screening through the Blue March campaign, similar to “Pink October”, a period dedicated to breast cancer screening.

This affliction, responsible for 18,000 deaths per year in France, mainly affects people over the age of fifty, the main target of the awareness campaign in the Principality and in neighbouring countries.

This cancer is very common since it ranks second in men after lung cancer, and second in women after breast cancer, while colon cancer can be detected despite the absence of symptoms.

The awareness campaign for prevention and screening is intended to encourage people to request a colonoscopy, in the case of family history, or with intestinal pain or blood appearing in the stool.

A permanent screening campaign, supported by the Department of Social Affairs and Health, began in 2006. It concerns all people between the ages of 50 and 80. Between 2006 and 2015, 30,000 people received an invitation to be tested. Of the 12,000 who people benefited from the Hemoccult Test, which involves a search for blood in the stool, 130 tests were positive.

However, in November 2015, a new procedure that is easier to use and more efficient replaced the Hemoccult Test. The Laboratory of Biology of the Princess Grace Hospital has been equipped with a machine specially designed to interpret the immunological tests sent to it by the people who test themselves.

The survival rate of the disease is intimately correlated with the speed of its diagnosis: the earlier it is taken, the less invasive and constraining the therapy, and the less severe the side effects of treatment.

Blue March 2018 sends a strong message to highlight the fight against colon cancer, which is initially combated by screening and prevention.

The Monaco screening centre (+377 97 98 83 02) is open Monday through Thursday 9 am to 5 pm and Friday from 9 am to noon.