WATCH: New AI tech helping Central Florida doctors catch more cases of colon cancer earlier

ORLANDO, Fla. — Colon cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the country, but is treatable if detected early.

>>> STREAM CHANNEL 9 EYEWITNESS NEWS LIVE <<<

Now, the first breakthrough in more than a decade to improve screenings is saving lives right in Central Florida.

READ: Thousands of flights canceled globally amid omicron surge

At the Center for Digestive Health in Orlando, there’s a new tool called “G-I Genius.” It’s the only computer-aided detection system of its kind, using artificial intelligence to spot colon cancer in its earliest stages.

It’s a critical advancement in the fight against a disease that kills a third of its new diagnoses within a year.

“This is an amazing tool that can help us detect more lesions that otherwise could be missed,” Dr. Bill Mayoral of The Center for Digestive Health said.

READ: Hubble vs. Webb: Comparing a veteran space telescope to its next-gen successor

With a nearly 100-percent sensitivity rate, in real time, G-I Genius’ scope uncovers microscopic evidence of a lesion or polyp in the lining of the colon, and highlights it on a monitor.

“It may not be anything,” Dr. Mayoral said. “But a lot of times, it’s something else that we wash off a little more, take a biopsy, and bingo, that was a polyp that God knows years later would have been an issue.”

Now, the specialists at the Center for Digestive Health won’t work without what they’re calling a second set of eyes in their mission to eliminate colorectal cancer.

READ: Florida judge latest to block Biden contractor vaccine rule

Approximately one out of every 25 adults will get colon cancer.

This year, the American Cancer Society lowered the recommended age to start screenings to age 45 or sooner if there’s a family history of colon cancer.

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.