Prevention: Colorectal Cancer

While there is no definitive prevention for colorectal cancer, there are steps you can take to lower your risk of developing it. According to the American Cancer Society, most of these steps include taking control of the risk factors that you have the ability to change, which were mentioned in the Risk Factors blog.

Here are some of the ways that you can prevent colon or rectal cancer:

Colorectal cancer screening

According to the American Cancer Society, “screening is the process of looking for cancer or pre-cancer in people who have no symptoms of the disease.” Therefore, screening can detect early warning signs of cancer, making it possible to treat the cancer as early as possible. Colorectal cancer, in particular, is highly curable when it is detected early.

Experts recommend beginning cancer screenings at age 50 for those who are not at increased risk. Screenings should start younger in people who have elevated risk factors for this type of cancer, such as family history of colon or rectal cancer or personal history of colorectal polyps or cancer.

Weight and wellness

Some risk factors of this cancer include being overweight, leading a sedentary lifestyle, and eating too much red or processed meat or fried or broiled food. To lower your risk of developing this cancer, try to limit your intake of these foods, and instead, eat more whole grain fibers, fruits, and vegetables to lower your chances of developing the cancer.

Additionally, getting even the minimum recommended amount of physical activity every day can decrease your risk of colorectal and other cancers, so remember to get up and get moving.

Monitoring both diet and exercise can lead to a healthier lifestyle and weight loss, as well as a decreased chance of colon or rectal cancer.

Not smoking or drinking

Avoiding smoking and alcohol can also help prevent colorectal cancer. Long-term smoking has been linked to a higher risk of colon and rectal cancer, as has high alcohol intake, particularly in males. Quitting smoking and limiting alcohol consumption to 2 drinks a day for men and 1 drink a day for women can decrease your chances for developing the cancer.

Taking vitamins and supplements

For the most part, more research is needed as to whether supplements and vitamins actually prevent colorectal cancer. For instance, some studies suggest that taking daily multivitamins that include folic acid may lower the risk of developing colon cancer, while other studies have found that folic acid might actually cause tumors to grow. Vitamin D and calcium have also been shown in some studies to help lower your risk, while other studies have not found the link between these supplements and lowered  risk. Some studies have shown a link between high magnesium levels and lower risk, but more research is still necessary to verify the link.

Use of NSAIDs

Those who take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) on a regular basis have been found to be at lower risk. NSAIDs include ibuprofen and naproxen, under the name brands Motrin, Advil and Aleve.

However, NSAIDs have also been found to cause adverse side effects such as ulcers, which can lead to bleeding in the stomach, which is why researchers do not recommend taking NSAIDs only to reduce the risk of colon or rectal cancer.

Female hormone replacement therapy

According to the American Cancer Society, “taking estrogen and progesterone after menopause (sometimes called menopausal hormone therapy or combined hormone replacement therapy) may reduce a woman’s risk of developing colon cancer.” However, women diagnosed with cancer while undergoing these therapies may in the later stages of their cancer. Additionally, this therapy is not recommended just to lower the risk, as the therapy can also increase the risk of heart disease, blood clots, breast cancer, and lung cancer.

Before using any of these methods of prevention, you should consult with your doctor to ensure you are taking the right steps for your overall health.

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Risk Factors: Colorectal Cancer

According to the American Cancer Society, a risk factor is considered anything that increases your chances of being diagnosed with a specific disease. In the case of colorectal cancer, some of these risk factors are able to be change, such as weight, but some are not, like age.

Here are the risk factors in which you have control:

A sedentary lifestyle

If you don’t get enough exercise, you have a higher chance of developing colon or rectal cancer than those who do.

Poor diet

Those who eat a lot of red or processed meats, or fried, broiled, or grilled foods might be at higher risk for this type of cancer.

Being overweight

Related to a sedentary lifestyle and a poor diet, those who are considered overweight or obese are also considered to be at high risk for developing colon or rectal cancer.


The link between smoking and lung cancer has been stressed in recent years, but there is also a risk that smokers can develop other types of cancers. If you have been a smoker for many years, you are more likely to develop this cancer than non-smokers.

Drinking alcohol

Heavy drinking can also lead to a diagnosis, and the American Cancer Society recommends “no more than 2 drinks a day for men and 1 drink a day for women” to avoid this type of cancer and other adverse health problems.

Here are the risk factors that you should know about, but that you cannot change:

Advanced age

Colorectal cancer is more common once an individual reaches age 50, and the risk of this cancer continues to increase as we age.

History of colorectal polyps or colorectal cancer

If you have been diagnosed with colorectal polyps in the past, you are at an increased risk for developing polyps or cancer again. The risk is particularly high if the patient was young when diagnosed for the first time.

History of inflammatory bowel disease

A history of inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis, or Crohn’s disease can increase your risk of colon or rectal cancer. Inflammatory bowel disease can lead to dysplasia, or cells in the colon or rectum that are abnormal but are not cancerous. These cells can develop into cancer over time if left untreated.

Family history

Though most of these cancers are found in those without a family history of the disease, “as many as 1 in 5” colorectal cancer patients have family members who have had the disease, according to the American Cancer Society.

Inherited gene mutations and syndromes

People who have certain genetic mutations that develop into syndromes have an elevated risk. Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP), Lynch syndrome, Turcot syndrome, Peutz-Jeghers syndrome, and MUTYH-associated polyposis are the most common syndromes linked to colon or rectal cancer.

Race and ethnicity

Though the reasons are not fully understood, “African Americans have the highest incidence of colon or rectal cancer and mortality rates of all racial groups in the United States,” according to the American Cancer Society. Jews of Eastern European descent (Ashkenazi Jews) also have a high risk.

Type 2 diabetes

Those with type 2 diabetes, usually non-insulin dependent, have an elevated risk of colon or rectal cancer, as those with type 2 diabetes and this cancer have similar risk factors, like low physical activity and being overweight.

Here are other risk factors linked to this:

Working night shifts

Differences in the levels of melatonin between those who work at night and those who work during the day are thought to affect the risk of developing different types of cancer, including colon or rectal cancer.

Treatment for other cancers

Men who have overcome testicular cancer have been found to have a higher rate of developing some cancers, including colorectal. Additionally, men who have been treated for prostate cancer with radiation therapy are also at higher risk for this type of cancer.

Visit our blog on colorectal cancer prevention to learn about what you can do to lower your risk.

Learn More About Risk Factors

Diagnosis: Colorectal Cancer

Symptoms of colorectal cancer may not manifest immediately, which is why routine cancer screenings are so vital in the early detection and diagnosis of the cancer. If symptoms do begin to appear, however, you may experience some or all of the following, according to the American Cancer Society:

  • A change in bowel habits, such as diarrhea, constipation, or narrowing of the stool, that lasts for more than a few days
  • A feeling that you need to have a bowel movement that is not relieved by having one
  • Rectal bleeding with bright red blood
  • Blood in the stool, which may make the stool look dark
  • Cramping or abdominal (belly) pain
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Unintended weight loss

Again, symptoms of colon or rectal cancer are not always obvious as the cancer begins to develop, so testing is necessary to determine if you have colorectal polyps or cancer, even if you are not experiencing any of these. You can also still have colorectal cancer if you still have normal bowel movements.

Additionally, it is important to remember that some of these symptoms can be caused by other, less severe conditions like a bowel infection, irritable bowel syndrome, and hemorrhoids. If you are experiencing one or more of these symptoms, it is still important to visit your doctor so that you can be treated accordingly.

If you are diagnosed with colorectal cancer, your doctor will try to determine the stage of your cancer, or how far it has spread throughout the body, if at all. The American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC)uses the TNM system to determine how far along the cancer is, and the classifications based on the following criteria:

  • Location, size, and extent of the original¬†tumor and subsequent tumor(s)
  • Whether or not the cancer has spread to nearby lymph¬†nodes
  • Whether or not the cancer has¬†metastasized, or spread to distant parts of the body

The staging process happens when a number of tests are completed, which can include physical examinations, imaging tests, laboratory tests, pathology reports, and surgical reports, according to the AJCC. The earliest-developing cancers are considered Stage I (1), and the latest stages of cancers are classified as Stage IV (4). The earlier the stage, the better the prognosis, and more options are available for treatment.

Once the stage of the cancer is determined, your doctor will put together a treatment plan that best suits your needs.

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Early Detection: Colorectal Cancer

Early detection of any cancer leads to the best possible chance at recovery. For colorectal in particular, there is an important step that can be taken that can lead to early detection and, in turn, to the most effective treatment plan. That step is screening, and the American Cancer Society calls screening “one of the most powerful weapons against colorectal cancer.”

It is vital to begin colon or rectal cancer screenings even when you show no symptoms of the disease, as it can take as long as 10 to 15 years for a polyp to develop into cancer. Though not all colorectal cancer starts with polyps, screening can lead to the detection and then the removal of these dangerous polyps.

Once the cancer spreads, the survival rate is lower than when the cancer is detected early and “the 5-year relative survival rate is about 90%,” according to the American Cancer Society. Only 4 out of 10 colorectal cancers are detected early, however, due to a lack of cancer screenings among those who should be getting tested.

Reasons for not getting screenings can include expense due to a lack of health care coverage and a lack of awareness of the importance of screening. Doctors and researchers continue to stress how crucial the cancer screenings are, which has led to the death rate of colon and rectal cancer dropping over the past few decades.

The American Cancer Society recommends that men and women at average risk for colon or rectal cancer be tested for it starting at age 50. Those at higher risk should begin screenings as early as age 40, or as early as one’s doctor recommends.

Tests that find both colorectal polyps and colon or rectal cancer include:

  • Colonoscopy (the gold standard – should be done every 10 years)
  • CT colonography/virtual colonoscopy (every 5 years)
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy (every 5 years)
  • Double-contrast barium enema (every 5 years)

Non-invasive tests that can find colorectal cancer include:

  • Fecal immunochemical test (FIT) (every year)
  • Stool DNA test (every 3 years)

Consulting with your doctor is the best way to determine which tests are best for you for the early detection of the cancer. Early detection is important not only for the possibly diagnosis and treatment of colorectal cancer but for the prevention of the disease.

Learn More About Early Detection

Treatment: Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer treatment is not “one size fits all.” Depending on the stage of your cancer and your preferences about the available options, your cancer treatment plan will differ from that of others. Your plan will be unique and tailored to your specific needs.

The plan that your doctor recommends will be based on the type of your cancer, the stage of your cancer (I, II, III, or IV), and on whether or not you have been treated for cancer before.

The two main categories of treatment are local and systemic. Local are typically used to treat cancer in its early stages, while systemic are usually used to treat cancer that is further advanced.

According to the American Cancer Society, types of local therapies include surgery, radiation therapy, and ablation or embolization. The type of surgery recommended will be based on whether the diagnosis is colon cancer or rectal cancer, while radiation therapy uses high-energy rays to destroy cancer cells. Ablation is the process of destroying tumors without removing them through a surgery or procedure, and embolization is the process of injecting liquid into the body to try to disrupt the flow of blood to cancerous cells in the liver.

Systemic includes chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy. Systemic treatments are also known as drug therapies since they involve drugs being given either orally or through the blood. There are different types of chemotherapy designed to treat different types of cancer, including systemic chemotherapy, regional chemotherapy, and hepatic artery infusion. Targeted drugs are different from chemotherapy in that they can target cancerous cells specifically.

Your doctor can better inform you of the side effects that might be associated with your recommended  options. Your team of doctors and health care professionals will be a crucial part of your support system as you go through treatment for colorectal cancer.

Click Here To Learn More About Treatment

Trinity Health System Recognized Nationally

31 Aug 2018 News
Location: Steubenville, Ohio




Trinity Health System was among a select group of hospitals nationwide recognized for promoting enrollment in state organ donor registries in a national campaign sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The campaign has added more than 443,000 donor enrollments to state registries nationwide.

Trinity Health System conducted awareness and registry campaigns to educate staff, patients, visitors, and community members about the critical need for organ, eye, and tissue donors and, by doing so, increased the number of potential donors on the state’s donor registry. The hospital earned points for each activity implemented between October 2017 and April 2018 and was awarded Bronze recognition through the HRSA Workplace Partnership for Life Hospital Campaign.

Of the 1,283 hospitals and transplant centers participating in the campaign, 244 Bronze Awards were awarded during this phase of the campaign.

“We are proud of our employees for their efforts to improve organ donation awareness in our community which could ultimately save lives.” Matt Grimshaw, Trinity Health System CEO. “Our employees continually look for ways to live out our mission to create healthier communities.”

This campaign is a special effort of HRSA’s Workplace Partnership for Life to mobilize the nation’s hospitals to increase the number of people in the country who are registered organ, eye, and tissue donors and ultimately, the number of organs available for transplant. The campaign unites donation advocates at hospitals with representatives from their local organ procurement organizations, Donate Life America affiliates, and state and regional hospital associations. Working together, the teams leverage their communications resources and outreach efforts to most effectively spread word of the critical need for donors.

Trinity Health System, located in Steubenville, Ohio, is part of Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI), the largest faith-based healthcare organization in the country. Our mission is to nurture the healing ministry of the Church, supported by education and research. Fidelity to the gospel urges us to emphasize human dignity and social justice as we create healthier communities.

Trinity Health System Expands to Harrison County

27 Jun 2018 News

Trinity Health System is announcing the opening of the new Trinity Health System Cadiz ambulatory facility in Cadiz, Ohio effective July 9, 2018. Located on 82424 Cadiz Jewett Road, the new facility will serve as the office site for the Family Practice of Porsche Beetham, D.O., a resident of Harrison County.

“I’m delighted to return home to Harrison County. And I am excited for the brand new Trinity facility that will house my office and so much more – an Express Clinic, specialists, physical therapy, radiology, and laboratory. Patients will be able to get the care they need even closer to home,” said Dr. Beetham.

Complementing Dr. Beetham will be the Trinity Health System Cadiz ExpressClinic which is a seven day a week walk-in clinic staffed by Certified Advanced Practice Providers. The ExpressClinic treats patients for everything from a cold, flu, stitches, sprain or broken bone, sore throat, sports injuries, and many more non-emergent illnesses on the same day when he or she cannot get to their provider. If a patient seen in the ExpressClinic needs a primary care physician, he or she can schedule a follow-up visit either with the clinic or with Dr. Beetham.

Supporting Dr. Beetham and the ExpressClinic, Trinity will offer lab and radiology services available on site. In addition to these critical primary care services, Trinity Sports Medicine (Dr. Michael Scarpone and Dr Aaron Orlosky) and Physical Therapy providers will also be on site at the new facility. Specialists who have provided services in Cadiz for many years will be located in the new facility. This includes Board Certified Interventional Cardiologist Dr. Ramana Murty, Board Certified Gastroenterologist Dr. Basel Termanini, and Board Certified Nephrologist Dr. Preethi Murty.

“Trinity Health System has served Harrison County for many years. We are excited to continue our dedication to the community and its citizens for the future with this beautiful new facility” stated Matt Grimshaw, President and CEO of Trinity Health System.


ExpressClinic: Daily 10 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Phone: 740-320-4048


Dr. Porsche Beetham, Daily 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
For an appointment call: 740-320-4048


Dr. Basel Termanini, Every other Tuesday 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
For an appointment call: 740-264-2686


Dr. Ramana Murty, Every other Tuesday 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m, Every
Thursday 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
For an appointment call: 740-282-5000


Dr. Preethi Murty,  First Monday of every month 12:40 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
For an appointment call: 740-282-1624


Dr. Michael Scarpone, Every 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th (if applicable) Monday 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m
Paula Lucas, PA, Every 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th (if applicable) Monday
1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m and Every Thursday 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Dr. Aaron Orlosky, Every 1st, 3rd and 5th (if applicable) Thursday
8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m
For an appointment call: 740-266-3866

Physical Therapy, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
For an appointment call: 740-266-3872

Cancer Dietary Initiative Lauded

24 May 2018 News

One of the most important factors in cancer treatment is a proper diet. Approximately five years ago, Dr Pervais Rahman, Medical Director for Medical Oncology, and his son Harris, began a project to serve community members.  Dr. Rahman noted that many patients were losing weight at a time where cancer treatments should not be impacting them.  At the same time, Harris needed to complete a community service project and wanted to make an impact on the community.  Combining both of their needs, they decided to assist patients for six months with their dietary needs.  They identified a dozen patients in the most need and working out of the lobby of the Tony Teramana Cancer Center, started the Cancer Dietary Initiative, a food pantry for Tony Teramana Cancer Patients. Donated items were provided on a monthly basis.


Presently, the Cancer Dietary Initiative, or more commonly referred to as CDI, has its own designation as a 501C3 non-profit organization.  Due to the overwhelming response, the program has continued and recently celebrated its five year anniversary.  Due to its growth, the pantry was relocated to the First Westminster Presbyterian Church in their former food pantry space.  After numerous requests, the board of directors decided to better serve community needs, and opened the pantry to all area cancer patients, regardless of their age or where they are receiving treatments, as long as a referral from a physician is received.  There are no financial limitations.


The third Saturday of every month, patients are given a supply of food items that they can prepare at home.  These patients have shown dramatic improvements in their recovery and the program continues to expand.  Many times, the patients are surprised to see that Dr Rahman and Dr Hyland are assisting with the distribution.


The CDI operates on donations – both food and monetary, as well as grants.  Trinity Health Systems has conducted several food drives to assist the patients. The CDI can be contacted by calling 740-264-7543.

Trinity’s Remaining Sylvania Franciscan Sisters to Depart

2 May 2018 News

Trinity Health System’s history traces back to 1901 with the opening of Gill Memorial Hospital.  In 1931, four Sylvania Franciscan Sisters responded to a request to provide their management expertise to the 30-bed facility located in downtown Steubenville.  The Sisters of St. Francis of Sylvania, Ohio began their work in 1916 in Toledo, Ohio and later built their motherhouse in Sylvania, Ohio in 1917.  In 1960, with expansion of Gill Memorial Hospital, at its original location, was impossible due to the lack of property space, they constructed St. John Hospital at the present location of Trinity West.

Later this year the last two Sylvania Franciscan Sisters serving at Trinity will be relocated depart for to other Sylvania Franciscan ministries in Indiana and Texas.  Paula Blevins, OSF and Nancy Ferguson, OSF will be serving in other capacities in other communities, but will always be remembered for their selfless service to the residents of the Greater Steubenville area.

These sisters have been an integral part of Steubenville and also served at St. Pius the Tenth Parish where they established the school (`in 1970), and also served at Aquinas Central School and Catholic Central High School.  They have always adapted their ministry in response to God’s call and the values of St. Francis and St. Clare to serve the ever-changing needs of the human family.  Committed to reverence and respect, the Sisters of St. Francis of Sylvania, Ohio are active in issues of peace and justice and care of the environment.  Since 1917, the Sisters have taught in 125 schools in thirteen states and ministered in twenty hospitals in seven states.

Upon leaving, Sister Paula said, “It has been a privilege and an honor to serve with the people here in Steubenville (now) Trinity Health System. I feel I have received more than I have given.  I am who I am today because of all the wonderful people I have shared this ministry with since 1979.  Steubenville/Trinity will always have a special place in my heart. I am greatly blessed.”

“Over the years, Sylvania Franciscan Sisters have held many roles, but always strove to extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ to those who came for care. I will soon be serving in a new capacity for Mission in another Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI) facility in Texas, but will miss my Steubenville community greatly. The Sylvania Franciscans leave a legacy of Franciscan values and believe all those who are partners in our ministry will keep our heritage alive,” added Sister Nancy.

According to Matt Grimshaw, Trinity Regional CEO, “The Sylvania Franciscan sisters have left a permanent mark on not only Trinity Health System, but on our community.  If it weren’t for their dedication and service, we would not be the organization we are today, and they will be missed by all.  Our great task is to live out their calling in our work each day, knowing that although their full-time presence here has changed, their spirit remains.  We will remain connected at a regional level, and we know that we will always be in their thoughts and prayer.”

Trinity Health System would like to thank the Sisters of St. Francis of Sylvania, Ohio, for their dedication to healthcare and humanity and their tireless efforts in improving the lives of the residents of Steubenville and the surrounding area.

Trinity Now Donating Surplus Food

18 Apr 2018 News

Trinity Health System is pleased to announce: Sodexo at CHI Trinity Health System is now Food Recovery Verified. Trinity Health System will be donating surplus food to the Urban Mission Ministries. Food Recovery Network is pleased to have CHI Trinity Health System in the network and is excited to verify that Trinity is committed to alleviating food waste by feeding hungry people.

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