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Saturday, February 23, 2008

Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal Cancer:

Colorectal cancer is also known as colon cancer by some people. It can occur in the large intestine of the digestive system. In digestive system, processing of food create energy and rid the wastes. Food is broken down in small pieces and goes to the small intestine.

Size of small intestine is 20 feet long. Work of small intestine is absorbing the nutrients and breaking down the food in small pieces. A muscular tube is joining the small intestine to large intestine. There is colon in digestive system which absorbs the nutrients and water and serves storage place for wastes.

These wastes pass out of the human body through the anus. There are four sections in the colon such as transverse colon, ascending colon, descending colon and sigmoid colon. Colorectal cancer may start in the rectum and any sections in colon. Sections of colon have many layers of tissues.

This cancer can be started in inner layer and transmitted other layers. This cancer starts with polyp. Polyp is a growth of tissue into the rectum and mid-point of the colon and called by adenoma.


Colorectal cancer is commonly affected the cells. Growth of cells gets out of the control and disrupts the functions of body. Excess growth of cells may develop polyps in the colon. These polyps can be occurred in the muscular tube.

Types of polyps in large intestine:

Hyperplastic polyps: These polyps are main risk factor of colorectal cancer.

Adenomas: There are more chances that Adenomas polyps become cancerous. Use screening tests such as colonoscopy and flexible sigmoidoscopy to remove the adenomas cancerous.

Inflammatory polyps: There are also chances for inflammatory polyps become cancerous. Ulcerative colitis is also very risky for colorectal cancer.

Risk factors:

It is commonly affected older aged people. Other risk factors of colorectal cancer include:-

Diabetes: Colorectal cancer is affected the people who have diabetes. There is 40% chances to develop this disease.

Alcohol: Colorectal cancer is also occurring in those people who use more and more alcohol.

Smoking: One out of ten cancers is mainly caused by smoking. There are 30% chances to develop this diseases in smokers.

Signs and symptoms:

  • Narrow stools.
  • Abdominal pain, gas and cramps.
  • Weight loss.
  • Blood in stool
  • Change in your lifestyle
  • Diarrhea
  • Blood from hemorrhoids and anus.


Screening tests will be recommended by health care providers. It may help to find detecting polyps. Digital rectal exam, blood test and Barium enema tests are also helpful to find colorectal cancers.

Colonoscopy: Colonoscopy is the effective and sensitive diagnostic test to find colorectal cancer. In this procedure, colonscope instrument is attached with video camera and it is used by the doctor to examine the entire rectum and all sections of colon.

New technologies: new technologies include virtual colonoscopy, computerized tomography scan and x-ray. These new technologies can help to detect polyps easily.


The types of treatment depend on causes, signs and symptoms and stages of colorectal cancer. Chemotherapy, surgery and radiation will be recommended by the doctor to treat cancer. The main treatment to remove the cancer is surgery. In surgery, cancerous part is removed by the surgeon. Uses of medicines are including in chemotherapy to destroy cancer cells. Radiation therapy is also effective to kill the cancer cells.


  • You should eat fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • You should eat foods that contain vitamins and minerals such as pyridoxine, vitamin B-9 and calcium magnesium.
  • You should avoid alcohol.
  • You should drink lots of water.
  • You should avoid smoking.

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