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U.S. News

FACTBOX: Details about colon cancer

(Reuters) - U.S. President George W. Bush on Saturday had five small polyps removed while he underwent a colonoscopy exam, a routine check for colon cancer. Following are some facts about colon cancer:

-- An estimated 153,760 Americans will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer this year, and 52,180 Americans will die from the disease, the American Cancer Society says.

-- It is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, after lung cancer.

-- Colonoscopies are screening tests that can detect the disease at its earliest, most treatable stage or even prevent it by removing precancerous growths called polyps.

-- Colonoscopy is advised for everyone 50 and older.

-- The procedure requires the patients to cleanse the bowels first, usually by taking a strong laxative or enema and then sticking to clear fluids for the day before the exam.

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