Signs And Symptoms Of Colon Cancer

Like & Follow Us On Facebook!


Colon cancer, also referred to as colorectal cancer, is the third leading cause of deaths related to cancer in the United States. One in 20 people is at risk of developing colon cancer, and the risk of getting the cancer increases as you get older. While colon cancer is most often found among older adults in the past, there has been a rise in cases in younger people, particularly those who don’t eat healthily, don’t exercise enough, and are obese or overweight. Every year, 50,000 people out of 145,000 diagnosed cases of large intestinal cancer succumb to this disease.
Colorectal cancer usually starts as a non-cancerous polyp in the large intestine, a major component of the digestive tract which consists of the colon and rectum. Though most colon polyps are harmless, some lumps of cells called adenomas or adenomatous polyps can turn cancerous and need to be removed. It takes five to ten years for polyps to turn into cancer, and while this might seem like enough time to prevent or control the cancer, studies have shown that there is a considerable delay between when people first experience symptoms of colon cancer and when it’s actually diagnosed. This significant lag time, which usually takes five months, could result in the spreading of colon cancer and lowering the chance of recovery. Unfortunately, many people diagnosed with colon cancer notice no warning signs or experience no specific symptoms, and this is the main reason the disease is often diagnosed only in later stages. This is why regular colorectal cancer screening is recommended once you hit 50 or if you’re at risk or have a family history of the disease or other cancers. Even though symptoms of colorectal cancer may be minor or non-existent during the early stages, there may be some early warning signs.
Here’s a list of signs and symptoms of colon cancer that you should not ignore.

1. Changes In Normal Bowel Habits

In truth, there is no such thing as a universal “normal” bowel movement. What matters is what’s normal for you. People have different bowel habits, and it’s important to be aware of any changes in your usual pattern of bowel movements. There are three persistent changes you should pay attention to, namely change in stool frequency, change in stool shape, and change n stool color. If your typical bowel movement is once a day, and you find yourself going to the bathroom more often, with loose and runny feces accompanied by abdominal pain, this may signal diarrhea. However, if it’s been more than a few days, it is a potential sign of colon cancer. Likewise, if you ordinarily have three bowel movements a day and you end up relieving yourself just once every other day, this may be a sign of constipation, but the change in bowel habit could also signal colon cancer.
Thin, narrow, ribbon or pencil-like stools can also be a sign of colon cancer. Similarly, bleeding in the colon because of colon cancer may result in changes in stool color, from bright red to maroon or purple. These changes usually resolve within a few days, but if you’re experiencing these symptoms for longer than a few days or if they happen often, you should see a doctor.