The LSU Health tumor registry has found colon cancer rates in the Acadiana parishes are among the highest in the U.S.

The study was led by Doctor Jordan Karlitz, who is also at the Tulane University of Medicine and he says the research focused on 18 parishes in the Acadiana area and colorectal cancer rates were significantly higher than both Louisiana and U.S. rates.

It appears the rates are higher in whites and white males

"We're going to need to study this further to figure out exactly who has the colon cancer," Karlitz said. "It appears the rates are higher in whites and white males."

Karltiz says colorectal cancer rates are high in French-speaking homes in Acadiana and those families with a Cajun heritage, which raises the possibility of a genetic predisposition. But he says more research is needed.

"We want to look for different factors, potential genetic factors or even concentrated environmental risk factors for colon cancers," Karlitz said.