St. John’s Hospitals Recognize March as Colon Cancer Awareness Month


Colorectal cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer and is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, affecting men and women of all races


OXNARD, CA – (March 6, 2020) – St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital (SJPVH) and St. John’s Regional Medical Center (SJRMC), which are Dignity Health hospitals, recognize the significance of March as National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. 

“If any family member has had a colon cancer before the age of 50, we recommend that the patient that we are seeing get screened ten years before that family member,” said Joseph A. Eisner, MD, General Surgeon at St. John’s Regional Medical Center. “If you think you may be at higher than average risk for colorectal cancer, speak with your doctor about getting screened early.”

Over 75 percent of colon and rectal cancers occur in individuals with no known risk factors and they often begin with no symptoms. St. John’s Hospitals encourage a proactive approach to intercepting this cancer in its earliest stages with regular screenings and the resources necessary to make informed health care decisions.

During the month of March, community members can easily access the free and confidential colorectal cancer risk assessment at DignityHealth.org/StJohnsRegional or DignityHealth.org/PleasantValley, under the services page and clicking on the health risk assessments.

Both men and women are equally at risk for colon cancer and the risk of developing colorectal cancer increases with age. Screening tests for colorectal cancer should begin soon after turning 50 and continue at regular intervals or at the recommendation of a physician. Although colorectal cancer is most common among people age 50 and older, it can also occur in teenagers. The majority of colon cancers appear in individuals with no known risk factors, which is why regular screenings are so important.

March serves as a gentle reminder of an annual screening colonoscopy, but colon health is of great importance to us all year long. Understanding the disease is essential for anyone who has been diagnosed with colorectal cancer and for those who are trying to prevent it. With early detection and regular screenings, colorectal cancer is preventable, treatable, and beatable. For more information, please call oncology Nurse Navigator Alicia Zaragoza, NP-C at 805.988.2641.

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About Dignity Health St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital and St. John’s Regional Medical Center

St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo and St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard are members of Dignity Health Central Coast, an integrated network of top quality hospitals, with physicians from the most prestigious medical schools, and comprehensive outpatient services - all recognized for quality, safety and service. Both hospitals are supported by an active philanthropic Foundation to help meet the growing health care needs of our communities. Hospitals in the Dignity Health Central Coast region also include Arroyo Grande Community Hospital in Arroyo Grande, French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria. Learn more at DignityHealth.org/PleasantValley and DignityHealth.org/StJohnsRegional.

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