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Protect Your Health with Prevention

As many of have probably heard by now, we recently lost a colleague and dear friend Devin Schaeffer.  Unfortunately, Devin developed a fairly rare form of intestinal cancer for which there are no effective screening tests, and by the time it was diagnosed it could not be successfully treated.  Fortunately, there are effective screening tests for several of the most common and deadly cancers.  However, many people are unaware of the guidelines, or ignore them.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, while screening rates have improved, millions are not getting the tests and as a result, thousands are dying needlessly.  For example 7 million American women who should have had a mammogram, have gone without it, and 22 million Americans who should have undergone colon cancer screening have not done so.  Even healthy, famous doctors are not immune to the risks of cancer.  Dr. Oz recently decided to get a colonoscopy.  Not because he felt he was at risk and needed one, but because he had just turned 50 and meeting the criteria for screening, he thought he should be a good role model and practice what he preaches.  No one was more surprised than him when he was informed that he a precancerous polyp.  Fortunately it was removed then and there during the colonoscopy.  Dr Oz admitted that had he not been such a public figure he may have waited several years before getting screened and by that time he may have developed a life threatening case of colon cancer.  Please review the following guidelines published by the American Cancer Society and if you meet the criteria for screening for any of the cancers listed – call your doctor TODAY.

One way to honor those who have passed away is to do something they would be proud of; I know Devin would be proud to know that he may have helped motivate you to take positive steps to preserve and improve your health.  Another way to honor Devin is to participate in the first annual Devin’s Dash Memorial 5k Race on October 16th.  I know that most of will not be able to come to Hilton Head and actually run or walk the actual course, but how about doing your own 5K that morning.  Hop in your car and chart out a 3.1 mile course and walk or jog it the 16th.  The race starts at 8:00am.  Join us in spirit and effort even if you can’t actually be here.  Donations are being accepted in his honor and will go directly to the American Cancer Society. You may register for the race and donate here.

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