Colon or Colorectal cancer, is one of the leading contributors to cancer deaths in the US. This cancer, just like other cancers, must be caught early so that you can have it properly treated. Although the tests may be difficult and uncomfortable for you, it is most wise for you to be able to know early if you have this cancer so you’ll be able to do the necessary actions for you to survive.
Calculate the risk. As with many health issues, colon and rectal cancers can have a family tendency. To find out your risk level for this cancer, you should examine the medical history of your immediate family members. Have any of your family members been victims of colon or rectal cancers previously? How old were they when they were diagnosed? Watch out for inflammatory bowel disease which is a sign of cancer. It is imperative if you have experienced any issues with your colon at any time in your life to have regular screenings done by your doctor.
Be conscientious of your bowel movement patterns. Your feces can show if you are at risk of getting colorectal cancer. Take note of the frequency and consistency of your bowel movements. If anything arises make an appointment with your physician right away if you notice any changes in your bowels. In addition, keep an eye out for any rectal bleeding. This might be an early indication of a developing a cancer.
Do not ignore stomach cramps. One other method of detecting colorectal cancer is by paying attention to your abdomen. Stomach cramps and stomach irritation are indications that your bowels have something to communicate. Schedule an appointment with your physician to have a rectal screening immediately.
Make sure that you receive the appropriate screening. Aside from keeping tabs on the telltale signs of this cancer, you may still need to get a colon screening done to be able to know for sure. Your doctor may suggest a Fecal count and sigmoidoscopy as one of your 3 options, an annual fecal occult blood test along with a flexible sigmoidoscopy every 5 years.
A standard screening method used to detect colorectal cancer is colonoscopy. They are looking for lesions of the abnormal nature that could be cancerous, with a tiny camera inserted in through your rectum into your cleansed colon. Typically, these will be performed at intervals of ten years.
Another option is the double-contact barium enema. While it is unpleasant, it functions to enable detection of colon and rectal malignancies. Your doctor will do this procedure every 5-10 years.
As a rule, screening should begin at 50. You may want to get it checked out earlier if you’ve had this in your family history. Early detected Colorectal cancer is already half-treated.