healtheo360 Wellness Blog

Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Posted on Mar 21, 2016 11:06:40 AM by healtheo360

Did you know that colorectal cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the United States? The goal of Colorectal awareness month is to raise awareness about colorectal cancer and how to take action toward prevention.

Colorectal cancer

What is Colorectal Cancer?

Colorectal cancer also known as colon cancer or rectal cancer is a cancer that starts in the colon or rectum. This form of cancer begins as a growth called a polyp. Colorectal cancer often affects people who are at least 50 years old. The American Cancer Society has estimated 95,720 new cases of colon cancer and 39,220 new cases of rectal cancer in the United States for 2016.

Symptoms

Colon Cancer
• Blood in the stool
• Vomiting
• Frequent gas pains, bloating, fullness, or cramps
• Change in bowel habits

Rectal Cancer
• Change in appetite
• Fatigue
• General abdominal discomfort
• Blood in stool
• Constipation or diarrhea

Every year, about 140,000 Americans are diagnosed with colorectal cancer, and more than 50,000 people die, according to CDC.

Test/Diagnosis

Colon Cancer:
• Physical Exam and medical history
• Digital rectal exam
• Fecal occult blood test
• Barium enema
• Sigmoidoscopy
• Colonoscopy

Rectal Cancer:
• Physical exam and medical history
• Digital rectum exam
• Colonoscopy
• Carcinoembryoc antigen (CEA) assay

Colorectal cancer

Treatment

Colon Cancer:
• Surgery
• Chemotherapy
• Biological Therapy
• Liver directed therapy
• Radiation therapy

Rectal Cancer:
• Surgery
• Pelvic exenteration
• Chemotherapy
• Radiation Therapy
• Targeted therapies

Prevention

1. No smoking
2. Cut out the heavy drinking, if possible drink occasionally or not at all
3. Exercise daily
4. Get screened for at your local hospital
5. Always know your family’s medical history
6. Aspirin such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory may help to reduce the size of polyps in the colon.

Did you know that everyone who is 50 years and older were screened regularly for colorectal cancer, 6 out 10 deaths from colorectal cancer could be prevented?

Sources:
Health Finder
American Society of Colon & Rectal Surgeons
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention
National Cancer Institute
WebMd

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