Saturday, June 18, 2011

Colon Cancer: Causes, Risk Factors, Symptoms and Treatment

What is colon cancer? Colon cancer (colorectal cancer) is a type of cancer that attacks the colon and rektrum. The cause of this cancer is the abnormal growth of cancer cells in the colon.

Causes and risk factors of colon cancer
Here are some causes and risk factors of colon cancer:

  • Age, generally, colon cancer strike a person above the age of 50 years. This is caused by colorectal polyps (tumors that grow on the inner wall of the colon and rectum). However, these cancers can also attack a person under the age of 50 years. This means that the the risk of colon cancer increases with age.

  • Alcohol, consuming alcohol can decrease the immune system and the risk of developing cancer will increase.

  • Hereditary factors, the risk of colon cancer increases if having a family who suffered this cancer. However, the risk can be prevented by applying a healthy lifestyle.

  • Genetic factors, some research shows that about 30% of cancer cases are caused by genetic abnormalities.

  • Obesity, obesity can decrease the immune system and increases the risk of colon cancer.

  • Ever had colon cancer, a person who had suffered from colon cancer have a bigger risk of developing colon cancer for the second time.

  • Smoking, besides being a cause of lung cancer, smoking can also cause other types of cancer, one of them is colon cancer. When inhaling cigarette smoke, more than 4000 kinds of toxins will enter the body and can damage the health.

  • Colitis, a person who suffering from colitis in a long term will have a risk of colon cancer.

Symptoms of colon cancer
Colon cancer has some symptoms are not specific, here are some of them:

  • Nausea and vomiting, usually, people with colon cancer will often feel nauseated and vomiting. This is due to a disturbance in the digestive system.

  • Stomach ache.

  • Bloating.

  • Lose weight.

  • Easily tired.

  • Digestive disorders such as constipation and diarrhea.

  • Blood on feses.

Treatment of colon cancer
Here are some methods that can be used to treat colon cancer:

  • Surgery, just like other types of cancer, colon cancer will be more easily treated if cancer is still in the early stages. The most common way to treat this cancer is by surgical removal of polyps in the colon.

  • Radiotherapy, radiotherapy is a method of treating cancer by using x-rays or ionizing radiation in a high intensity. Radiotherapy is intended to kill cancer cells in the body.

  • Chemotherapy, chemotherapy is a method of treating cancer by giving anti-cancer drugs to the patients. Some effects of chemotherapy include: nausea, vomiting, hair loss and diarrhea.

  • Adjuvant therapy, adjuvant therapy is a chemotherapy that cancer patients do after surgery to kill cancer cells remaining in the body. This therapy is usually performed on patients with advanced cancer (stage III or higher). Adjuvant therapy is carried out using capacitabine and without injection.

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