March is About Colorectal Cancer Awareness
The American Cancer Society celebrates March by focusing its attention on colorectal cancer. Here, we will share some information provided by the Mayo Clinic that you might want to know about colorectal cancer.
What is Colorectal Cancer?
Colorectal cancer is a term often used interchangeably with colon cancer. Colon cancer refers to cancer that originates in the large intestine, also called your colon. Colorectal cancer is technically the term used to describe colon cancer and rectal cancer, which originates in the rectum, just past the colon.
How Do Doctors Diagnose Colorectal Cancer?
Most adults get a colonoscopy between 45 and 50 to screen for colon cancer. If you fall into one of several risk categories, your doctor may begin screening you for colorectal cancer at any time.
What Are the Factors That Can Increase Your Risk of Developing Colon Cancer?
Here are some of the factors that might increase your risk of colorectal cancer.
- Advanced age
- African-American descent
- A personal medical history of benign polyps
- A personal medical history of inflammatory intestinal diseases such as Chron’s and Colitis
- Family history
- Poor Diet
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Heavy alcohol consumption
Can You Lower Your Risk of Getting Colorectal Cancer?
Like many cancers, there are changes you can make in your life that might decrease your risk of getting colorectal cancer. Eating a proper diet, exercising regularly, and drinking alcohol in moderation only, might help you fend off a cancer diagnosis. Some other things that might lower your risk of cancer include:
- Quitting smoking
- Eating a diet rich in fiber, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Speaking to your doctor about your risks, family, history, and any symptoms, if any
How Do Doctors Treat Colorectal Cancer?
Once doctors make a diagnosis, treatment for colorectal cancer depends on the stage and specific type of cancer. Treatment might require minor surgery and if the doctors catch the patient’s cancer in its earliest stages, treatment may end there.
However, it is more likely that when you or someone you love gets diagnosed with colon cancer, that treatment will involve much more. Major surgery may be necessary not only to remove cancer in the intestines but organs to where cancer has spread. Chemotherapy and/or radiation might also be necessary to fight colon cancer.
Early Detection of Colorectal Cancer Can Greatly Improve The Outcome
When colorectal cancer is detected early, the outcome is often a complete recovery. For this reason, you should schedule a routine colon cancer screening.
Also, be sure to pay attention to your body and report anything out of the ordinary to your doctor. Signs of colorectal might include some of the following:
- Blood in your stool
- Rectal bleeding
- Changes in bowel habits that do not go away, such as constipation, diarrhea, or a noticeable difference in the color or consistency of your stool.
- Persistent cramps, gas, or other abdominal discomforts
- Unusual or unexplained weight loss
When My Friend is Diagnosed With Colorectal Cancer, What Can I Do?
Studies show that keeping a positive outlook can have a tremendous impact on someone’s cancer journey.
Consider this when trying to decide how to help the person you know with cancer. Recovering from surgery, sitting through chemotherapy treatments, and dealing with the physical side effects can result in depression, anxiety, and anger.
Anything you can do to help your friend or relative achieve a happy, optimistic, relaxed state, even for a short time, can be more valuable than you might realize.
Help Your Friend With Cancer by Calling Rock the Treatment
If you are considering a gift for your friend who is getting chemo or radiation, send something from Rock the Treatment. Our gift boxes are designed specifically for cancer patients undergoing treatment. At Rock the Treatment, our gift boxes contain items intended to ease the physical and emotional symptoms that accompany chemotherapy and radiation.
Call Rock the Treatment at 516-690-7009 to learn more about our healthy and helpful gifts for people with cancer.
We have just what you need to provide support to the person in your life getting chemotherapy or radiation for colon cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, and more. Visit us on our website at www.rockthetreatment.com.