Recent Blog Articles
Can blue light-blocking glasses improve your sleep?
Skills children need to succeed in life — and getting youngsters started
Thinking about COVID booster shots? Here’s what to know
Cancer survivors' sleep is affected long after treatment
Do I have to yell so much?
What to do when elective surgery is postponed
What happened to trusting medical experts?
Stuttering in children: How parents can help
Icy fingers and toes: Poor circulation or Raynaud’s phenomenon?
Evoking calm: Practicing mindfulness in daily life helps
By the way, doctor: How often should I have a colonoscopy?
Q. How often should a healthy 55-year-old woman have a colonoscopy? Do the benefits outweigh the risk of complications, such as bowel perforation?
A. Colonoscopy is one of several tests used to screen for colorectal cancer, the third most common cancer and cause of cancer mortality (after breast and lung cancer) in American women. In 2018, some 140,000 Americans were diagnosed with the disease, and 50,000 died of it. Experts believe that adequate screening could have prevented perhaps 60% of those deaths.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Free Healthbeat Signup
Get the latest in health news delivered to your inbox!