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Prevent Cancer Foundation® remembers actor and cultural icon Chadwick Boseman

Boseman died at age 43 after four-year battle with colorectal cancer

August 31, 2020

The Prevent Cancer Foundation is mourning the death of actor and cultural icon Chadwick Boseman. Boseman, 43, passed away after a private four-year battle with colorectal cancer. He was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer in 2016.

Chadwick Boseman

Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Disney

Boseman is best known for his groundbreaking role as T’Challa in “Black Panther.” Other prominent roles include Thurgood Marshall in “Marshall,” James Brown in “Get on Up” and his breakout role as Jackie Robinson in “42.” Boseman filmed several of these movies, along with other roles, while undergoing treatment for his cancer.

“Our hearts go out to Mr. Boseman’s family and friends, as well as the legions of fans who have been so deeply touched by his work,” said Carolyn Aldigé, Founder and CEO of the Prevent Cancer Foundation. “While the roles he played on-screen made him a hero to many, we now know that off-screen he was heroically battling cancer, a nemesis that has intruded on so many of our lives. His tragic death is a reminder to all of us that our work to end cancer is far from done.”

While Boseman was an exceptional person, his story in this way is not unique—colorectal cancer has been on the rise in young adults in recent years. According to a 2015 study by MD Anderson Cancer Center researchers, by 2030 researchers expect that rates of colon cancer will increase by 90% for people ages 20-34 and 27.7% for peoples ages 35-49.

In 2018, the American Cancer Society changed its recommendation for colorectal cancer screening, saying people of average risk should begin routine screening at age 45 (the previous recommendation said to begin at age 50). The Prevent Cancer Foundation® has supported this change and encourages all adults to understand their risk factors and talk to their health care providers about screening.

Colorectal cancer screening options include colonoscopy, stool DNA test (sDNA), fecal immunochemical test (FIT), high-sensitivity guaiac-based fecal occult blood test (FOBT), virtual colonoscopy or flexible sigmoidoscopy. Your health care provider can help determine which screening test is right for you.

If you have questions about preventing colorectal cancer or detecting it early, the Prevent Cancer Foundation is here for you with the resources and information you need. Please click on the links below to learn more, contact us through email or find us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Reduce your risk of colorectal cancer or detect it early

More on the rise of colorectal cancer in young adults

Gut check: Young-onset colorectal cancer in your state

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