Intermountain 'Inflatable Colon' educates Utahns on colorectal cancer

Posted at 12:31 PM, Mar 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-13 14:31:15-04

SANDY, Utah — As part of Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, Intermountain Health is hosting its “Let’s Get to the Bottom of Colon Cancer” tour.

Over 30 days, a 12-foot, 113-pound inflatable colon will travel to 22 Intermountain hospitals and clinics in Utah and Idaho. It stopped at Intermountain Alta View Hospital in Sandy on Monday.

The exhibit gives people the chance to walk through the inside of a human colon and learn about the effects diseases can have on the vital organ.

According to Intermountain Health, one of the most critical messages of the campaign is letting people know that colon cancer is one of the most treatable cancers. Screening is the only way it can be detected, though, and those guidelines have changed.

In May 2021, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force began recommending that people start getting screened at age 45 instead of 50.

Most of that stems from colon cancer rates increasing 1 to 2 percent a year among those younger than 50 since the mid-1990s, according to the American Cancer Society.

“Personally, I’d rather be out of a job because my job is to cut out the cancer. But if people get their colonoscopies, and we find polyps, we can remove the polyps before they turn to cancer. So, it’s absolutely preventable,” said Kim.

The American Cancer Society estimates more than 153,000 Americans will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer this year. That makes it the third-most common cancer diagnosed for men and women. It’s the second-leading cause of total cancer-related deaths.

Intermountain Health Inflatable Colon Tour Schedule:

March 13 Intermountain Alta View Hospital Sandy, UT
March 14 Intermountain LDS Hospital Salt Lake City, UT
March 15 Intermountain Medical Center Murray, UT
March 16 Intermountain Medical Center Murray, UT
March 17 Intermountain Riverton Hospital Riverton, UT
March 20 Intermountain American Fork Hospital American Fork, UT
March 21 Intermountain Spanish Fork Hospital Spanish Fork, UT
March 22 Intermountain Utah Valley Hospital Provo, UT
March 23 Intermountain Layton Hospital Layton, UT
March 24 Intermountain McKay-Dee Hospital Ogden, UT
March 27 Intermountain Bear River Valley Hospital Tremonton, UT
March 28 Intermountain Logan Regional Hospital Logan, UT
March 29 Intermountain Cassia Regional Hospital Burley, ID
March 30 Saltzer Health GI Meridian, ID
March 31 Saltzer Health/Nampa Rec. Center Nampa, ID