As I write this article my Grandmother is lying in a hospital bed slowly succumbing to colon cancer. If this disease takes her life, and the doctors think it will, she will be the third and final sister in her family to have lost her life to this deadly form of cancer. It boggles my mind to think about an entire family of women being wiped out by this disease but that is exactly what is happening.
Sadly, colon cancer strikes black women at an alarming rate and the ages at which sistas are being diagnosed with the disease is getting younger and younger. Despite having the greatest risk of developing colon cancer, research shows that few black women think they are at risk and therefore do not get tested or even know that testing exists.
I admit to being one of those women and a quick survey of my friends resulted in the same. Doctors say women 40 years and older should be tested but I am starting a bit early and suggest that many of you do too. If caught in its early stage, the five year survival rate for colon cancer in black women is 83%.
Don’t wait any longer sistas and don’t say you didn’t know because I am telling you now. Take care of yourselves. Take care of your bodies. Get tested now. If not for yourselves, then for your loved ones. I am getting tested now for my daughter. Never do I want her to have to go through with me what I am going through with my Grandmother.