As the name suggests, the rectum or colon is where colorectal cancer usually develops.
In the US, this is actually the third most typical cancer to be diagnosed, be it in women or men.
Polyps that form on the lining of the colon or rectum frequently lead to colorectal cancer.
Over time, polyps may grow into malignant tumors and cause colorectal cancer.
Experts have identified several risk factors for colorectal cancer, including:
- Age: People over 50 tend to have a higher prevalence of colorectal cancer.
- Family history: The likelihood of getting diagnosed with colorectal cancer or polyps is increased in families with a history of the disease.
- Inflammatory bowel illness: People who have had inflammatory bowel disorders, such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, are more likely to get cancer, including colorectal.
- Lifestyle: According to several studies, a diet heavy in processed food and red meat, obesity, inactivity, and smoking raise the chance of getting colorectal cancer.
Symptoms can include: local bleeding, stool with blood in it, weakness or exhaustion, unplanned weight loss, cramping or discomfort in the abdomen, constipation or diarrhea.
It is critical to remember that these symptoms may also be brought on by other illnesses, making a visit to the doctor necessary for a precise diagnosis.
Various tests, such as the following, are frequently used to determine the presence of colorectal cancer:
- Colonoscopy: A tube with a camera on its end is used during to allow a medical professional to inspect the colon and the rectum.
- Faecal occult blood test: Is used to look for blood in the stool, which may be a sign of an issue.
- Colonoscopy discovered polyps or other abnormalities might warrant a biopsyto look for cancerous cells.
The stage of the illness and the patient’s general condition determine how colorectal cancer is treated.
Treatment choices might be:
- Surgery: Surgery is frequently the first line of therapy. Removing the malignant tissue is the aim of surgery.
- Chemotherapy: This medical procedure employs chemicals to destroy cancer cells. It frequently goes hand in hand with surgery.
- High-energy radiation is used in radiation treatment to eliminate cancer cells.
It can be administered either before surgery to reduce the tumor or after to eradicate any cancer cells that may have persisted.
- Targeted therapy targets chemicals involved in the development and spread of cancer cells.