Dr. James Yoo is a colorectal surgeon at Tufts Medical Center in Boston. Beyond his remarkable accomplishments in the medical field, specifically in the areas of lab research and the development of new surgical approaches, this year, he and his team are taking Colon Cancer Month by storm! Between Twitter chats and in-person events, they’re creating quite a buzz in Boston and beyond. We’re so inspired to see medical professionals, like Dr. Yoo and the team at Tufts, getting involved with March in a hands-on way. Together with survivors, medical professionals and advocates across the country, we’re putting colon cancer on the map and saving lives. Thank you, Dr. Yoo, for being part of this movement!
Why did you choose to get involved in the gastroenterology field?
My patients often ask me this! I usually have a joke for this answer but all kidding aside, colorectal surgery is a great and meaningful field. I like the variety of conditions that we treat and have a special interest in minimally invasive approaches. I look forward to the day when colorectal cancer can be treated without surgery.
How have you been involved with Dress in Blue Day and Colon Cancer Month?
I’m very excited that this year, we are co-hosting a patient symposium with the Colon Cancer Alliance called “Living with Colon Cancer: Therapies Beyond Medicine.” Through the event, we plan to raise awareness about colorectal cancer and also to provide useful resources for current patients. When I see patients in the clinic or hospital, we are usually focused on medical and surgical treatments. But we know treating colorectal cancer involves so much more than surgery and chemotherapy. There are many other therapies that can complement traditional treatment, and we want people to be aware of them. I am really excited and thankful for the speakers that have agreed to participate, and am looking forward to a great event
Why is it important for medical professionals to get involved with spreading colon cancer awareness, specifically during March?
Participation can happen on so many levels. One-on-one patient interactions, clinical and basic research, involvement with local community groups and fundraising are all great ways to help. Medical societies and doctor’s groups can also make a big impact; I am proud to say that the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons recently partnered with the Colon Cancer Alliance to promote awareness.
We are inspired by our patients every day, and can all do more to raise awareness for one of the most common (and preventable) cancers.
Learn more about Colon Cancer Awareness Month at coloncancermonth.org. Don’t forget, the Colon Cancer Alliance serves as a source of information about colon health. If you have additional questions about colon cancer screening or are in need of support, please contact our free Helpline at (877) 422-2030. We’re here to help.