Should Women Be Concerned About Colon and Rectal Cancer?


A serious health complication, colorectal cancer is the second-highest reason for death caused by cancer in women, behind breast cancer. Comprising the longest section of your large bowel, the colon draws water, vitamins, and minerals from the remnants of food that has made its way through the small bowel. The last segment of the large intestine is known as the rectum. Sometimes, small growths of cells (called polyps) arise within the inner surface of the colon or rectum. Such polyps generally cause very few to zero symptoms; however, intestinal polyps can progress into colorectal cancer. Because they are remarkably similar, colon and rectal cancer are often grouped together.

Regular colon and rectal cancer screenings can identify signs of colorectal cancer in the early stages and significantly enhance a person's health forecast. You can arrange for a colonoscopy and other related colorectal cancer screenings at Texas Digestive Disease Consultants. To meet with a seasoned gastroenterologist in the DFW area and learn more about colorectal cancer and other digestive issues, talk with our team today to schedule a visit.

What should I know about colorectal cancer?

Colon and rectal cancer arises in the large intestine or rectum. The majority of patients having colon cancer will present no indications in the beginning stages. The individuals who do exhibit signs or symptoms could notice the following:

  • Inexplicable weight loss

  • A change in bowel habits

  • Rectal bleeding or blood present in stool

  • Ongoing abdominal cramps or discomfort

In the event that you or someone you love has one or more of these symptoms, reach out to Texas Digestive Disease Consultants in DFW today to talk with a digestive health physician.

If a cancerous growth invades the external wall of the large bowel, it can gain access to the circulatory or lymph system and move to additional regions of the body. Patients whose colorectal cancer has spread in addition to the colon and rectum have markedly lower odds of survival than patients whose cancer is still confined. As such, early identification and medical care are crucial.

What are common colorectal cancer risk factors?

Though anyone can be diagnosed with colon or rectal cancer, a few factors might place certain individuals at higher risk. Common risk factors for colon cancer are as follows:

  • A personal history of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

  • Obesity

  • A family history of colon cancer

  • Alcohol use

  • Being over 50

  • Smoking

People with such risks should have periodic colon cancer screening tests, like a routine colonoscopy.

In what way is colon or rectal cancer diagnosed?

A variety of approaches to colorectal cancer screening may be used for patients at risk of developing colon and rectal cancer. Such screening procedures include various forms of colonoscopy procedures, stool analysis, and blood work. To conduct a colonoscopy, a gastroenterologist threads a thin scope containing a camera into the large intestine to look for any irregularities, such as growths in the colon. In cases where colon polyps are identified during a colonoscopy, they can often be taken off at the time of the procedure and later biopsied for signs of malignant cells. If colon cancer has been detected, more extensive evaluations can be performed to learn if the cancer has spread and to determine the most effective treatment options.

How is colon or rectal cancer treated?

The approach to treating colon cancer will be decided according to the size, location, and stage of the cancer and could include chemotherapy, surgery, or radiation treatment. Colon polyps may take 10 –15 years to turn into cancer, which means that when a polyp is detected in the early stages, it can often be excised before it turns cancerous. For patients who have localized colorectal cancer and undergo treatment, there is a five-year survival rate of around 90%. Having a colonoscopy on a routine basis can save your life; however, about one-third of U.S. adults are not up to date on their colon and rectal cancer screenings.

Schedule a colonoscopy in DFW

Colorectal cancer is a leading reason behind cancer-related fatalities among women. It is, however, highly treatable when diagnosed early and simple to detect through a regular colonoscopy. Individuals who are over the age of 50 or who have been diagnosed with additional health concerns that increase their risk of colon and rectal cancer are encouraged to arrange a regular colonoscopy screening. Texas Digestive Disease Consultants uses the most modern processes and technology to care for digestive wellness, and our team of skilled physicians works with a patient-first mentality. To discover more about colorectal cancer or any other GI health condition, contact Texas Digestive Disease Consultants in DFW.