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About Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths for both men and women in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But this disease is easily treatable if caught early. So, what is it and what are the symptoms you should look out for?

What Is Colorectal Cancer?

Colorectal cancer begins in the inner lining of the large bowel. Often, the cancer begins as a growth called a polyp. If the polyp’s cells have invaded the bowel wall, then it is called a cancer. It is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in the United States, but the good news is that it is also one of the most treatable. Early detection of the disease can reduce a person’s risk of death by 90%. Colorectal cancer is divided into five stages:

  • Stage 0: Cancer has not moved from where it started and is restricted to the innermost part of the colon.
  • Stage 1: Cancer has begun to spread but is still in the inner lining.
  • Stage 2: Cancer has grown through the wall of the colon and has spread to nearby tissue.
  • Stage 3: Cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes but has not spread to other parts of the body.
  • Stage 4: Cancer has spread to distant parts of the body

You May or May Not Have Symptoms

Colorectal cancer symptoms that may be present can vary depending on the cancer's size and location. People may experience rectal bleeding, unexplained weight loss, a change in bowel habits, or abdominal pain. However, many people with colorectal cancer experience no symptoms. Because of this, regular screening is important. If you are over 50, speak with your doctor about scheduling a colonoscopy.

About Drexel Surgery

Drexel Surgery provides expert, compassionate and technologically advanced care to patients with diseases of the intestines and anorectum.  The medical staff is dedicated to working with patients to ensure they achieve complete satisfaction with their care. Our team believes in the importance of education so our patients and physicians can make informed decisions together.

The information on these pages is provided for general information only and should not be used for diagnosis or treatment, or as a substitute for consultation with a physician or health care professional. If you have specific questions or concerns about your health, you should consult your health care professional.

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