Why do I need a cancer screening?

Cancer screenings are a preventive step you can take to identify signs of cancer in the earliest stages. The Halper Family Medicine team of doctors may recommend certain cancer screenings based on your personal medical history, your family history, and your current health.

The goal of preventive screenings is to confirm a diagnosis, so that treatment can begin as soon as possible. With early treatment, many cancers can be easier to treat and more successful than cancers discovered in later stages.

What cancer screenings are available?

Halper Family Medicine offers several on-site screening tests to identify cancers, even if you’re not experiencing symptoms. Available screenings include:

BRCA cancer screening

This genetic test identifies mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes in the blood that can indicate risk for breast or ovarian cancers.

Breast cancer

Manual breast exams can assess the health of the breast tissue and identify abnormalities that may indicate cancer.

Cervical cancer

Pap tests are an effective treatment for identifying changes in the cervical cells that can indicate precancerous or cancerous conditions.

Prostate cancer

Prostate cancer screenings involve a blood test to identify the presence of the prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a protein that can be a sign of prostate cancer when found at high levels.

Colorectal, or colon, cancer

A colonoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that evaluates the health of the colon using a thin, flexible tube with an attached light and camera. The technology sends real-time images of the internal structures of your colon to an external monitor to help identify potentially cancerous polyps.

The Halper Family Medicine doctors can also refer you for other types of screenings to identify cancer in the lungs, thyroid, or other areas of concern.

When do I need a cancer screening?

The timeline for routine cancer screenings depends on your specific health history. Even if you’re showing no symptoms of an underlying health condition, the Halper Family Medicine team may recommend cancer screenings during your annual exam or every several years, based on the type of screening and your health.

If your personal or family history shows an increased risk of certain cancers, you may need to undergo screenings more often than other people.

Cancer screenings may also be necessary if you begin experiencing symptoms that could indicate cancer. For this reason, it’s important to report any changes in your health immediately, so the Halper Family Medicine team can address them without delay.

Find out more about which cancer screening is right for you by calling Halper Family Medicine or booking an appointment online today.