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[March 4, 2013]


SUNY Downstate Offers Screenings and Information on Colorectal Cancer during March

March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that colorectal screening saves lives:  “If everyone who is 50 years old or older were screened regularly, as many as 60% of deaths from this cancer could be avoided.”

SUNY Downstate Medical Center is observing Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month by offering free colorectal screenings at both its Central Brooklyn and Bay Ridge sites.

“Colorectal cancer is one of the most treatable forms of cancer if detected early,” says Frank Gress, MD, chief of gastroenterology and hepatology at SUNY Downstate. “Moreover, regular screenings can largely prevent colorectal cancer by identifying polyps before they become malignant.”

Free screenings are available Saturday, March 16, 2013, from 10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at University Hospital of Brooklyn in Central Brooklyn, 445 Lenox Road, Suite I (Eye), Brooklyn, New York 11203. You may also enter via 470 Clarkson Avenue. For more information, call 718-270-4772.

Downstate is also offering free colorectal cancer screenings Thursday, March 21, 2013, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at SUNY Downstate at Bay Ridge, the Urgent Care Center, 9036 Seventh Avenue (at 92nd Street), Brooklyn, New York 11228. The telephone number is 718-567-1464.

In addition, a free community health promotion lecture on “Colorectal Cancer:  Prevention, Early Detection, and Treatment” will be offered Wednesday, March 20, 2013, from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at Downstate’s Health Science Education Building, Classroom 1 A, 395 Lenox Road, Brooklyn, New York 11203. The speaker is Yvette Lam-Tsai, MD, from the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
This lecture will also be available for viewing as a live web conference at SUNY Downstate at Bay Ridge, in the Conference Room, 699 92nd Street (on Seventh Avenue), Brooklyn, New York 11228. For more information, call 718-270-3739.

Risk factors for colorectal cancer include being of age 50 or older; having a history of polyps or family history of cancer; smoking; diabetes; obesity; and being of African-American or Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry. Symptoms may include blood in or on the stool, stomach pain or cramps that do not go away, and unexplained weight loss, but the most common symptom of colorectal cancer is no symptom at all.
Downstate’s free screenings are sponsored by University Physicians of Brooklyn, Inc., University Hospital of Brooklyn, the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and the Center for Community Health Promotion and Wellness.

You can learn more about Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month by visiting this CDC site:

SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, Colleges of Nursing and Health Related Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, a School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and an Advanced Biotechnology Park and Biotechnology Incubator.
SUNY Downstate ranks ninth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools. More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school. To learn more about SUNY Downstate, visit