Test Your Colon IQ

The Facts Could Save Your Life

Does the thought of discussing the colon or rectum make you want to run the other way? Few people get screened for colon cancer because they’re embarrassed or simply don’t have the right information. However, if detected early, this is one of the few cancers that’s highly curable.

Take the below quiz to see how much you know about colon cancer. To get screened for Colon Cancer, make an appointment with a board-certified Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital gastroenterologist.

The colon:

  • Functions somewhat differently in men and women
  • Is a vestigial organ, like wisdom teeth or the appendix
  • Answer: Is part of the large intestine, which moves waste out of the body


Among all cancers, cancer of the colon or rectum is:

  • The number one killer
  • Not among the top 5 most deadly cancers
  • Answer: The second biggest killer


The percentage of preventable deaths from colon cancer is:

  • 48 percent
  • 26 percent
  • Answer: 60 percent


Cancer of the colon or rectum:

  • Affects men more than women
  • Affects women more than men
  • Answer: Affects men and women about the same


Symptoms of colon cancer:

  • Begin to appear before the disease spreads
  • There are no symptoms for colon cancer
  • Answer: Often do not develop until the later stages of the disease


A healthy person’s chance of getting colon cancer is:

  • 1 in 76
  • 1 in 120
  • Answer: 1 in 18


People of most ethnic backgrounds should get screened for colon cancer starting at age:

  • 30
  • 40
  • Answer: 50


African-Americans should get screened for colon cancer starting at age:

  • 35
  • 65
  • Answer: 45


According to the American Gastroenterological Association, the most accurate and efficient screening option is:

  • Virtual Colonoscopy using a CAT scan
  • Barium enema
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy
  • Stool sample test
  • Answer: Colonoscopy


A colonoscopy screening involves:

  • Physical examination by a doctor while you’re awake
  • Minor outpatient surgery
  • Answer: 20–30 minute procedure with mild sedation

Learn More about Colon Cancer