Colorectal Cancer: Can Cancer Prevention Be Treated?
Colorectal cancer is an increasingly common disease in both men and women. Most of the early stages of the disease do not have specific signs that make the subjective subjective, so many cases diagnose and detect the disease as it progresses to a later stage, making it difficult to treat.
What is colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer is a cancer that starts in the large intestine and is considered to be the most benign of the digestive organs. The degree of malignancy is also related to the location of the tumor compared to the anus: the further away from the anus, the higher the degree of malignancy.
Colorectal cancer usually originates from benign tumors, most often from adenomas (called polyps). Therefore, colonoscopy detects colorectal polyps and bypasses endoscopy as a preventative treatment for cancer.
Who is at risk for colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer usually appears in older adults (> 50 years of age) but can also occur at any age.
People with colorectal polyps
People with family members like siblings, children with polyps or colorectal cancer
People with chronic colitis such as ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease
People who are obese, eat a lot of fried food, processed foods, eat less fiber, smoke and use alcohol a lot .
Colorectal cancer may progress silently without symptoms or may cause some of the following symptoms:
Abdominal pain related or not related to defecation
Changes in bowel habits such as diarrhea or constipation persist, frequency of bowel movements, stool properties
Bloody stool or blood in the stool.
Fatigue, weight loss with no known cause.
Anemia of unknown cause.
How to detect colorectal cancer?
The surest method is a colonoscopy that combines biopsy to look for cancer cells
Blood test to look for markers of colorectal cancer: is used to monitor and detect recurrent colorectal cancer after treatment. This test cannot be used for diagnosis because: these marks are increased in many other benign and malignant diseases and 30% of colorectal cancer patients are still normal
Computerized tomography and ultrasound: to detect the movement of cancerous masses to other organs, most often to the liver
The treatments for colorectal cancer
Depending on the stage, there are corresponding remedies
Early stage: Clipping of mucosa through endoscopy
Stage of invasive tumor deep down into colorectal wall: Surgery to remove the colon where the tumor is located
Metastatic stage: Surgery combined with chemotherapy
Late stage: Surgery combines chemotherapy and radiation
How to monitor after treatment?
Follow-up monitoring is important for early detection of cancer recurrence, thus helping to achieve prompt outcomes.
Clinical examination and CEA periodically every 3-6 months for the first 3 years after tumor removal surgery, every 4 months of the 4th and 5th years
Chest scans, abdomen, sub-frames annually, at least for the first 3 years after surgery
Endoscopy of the entire colon 1 year later, and if normal, regular colonoscopy every 3-5 years, depending on the results of the previous colonoscopy
Colorectal cancer is preventable
Regular colorectal screening is one of the best ways to prevent cancer. Pre-cancerous polyps usually show no symptoms, which can be found through colonoscopy a few years before the invasive cancer develops. Screening also found pre-cancerous polyps and removed before it became cancerous. This is considered the most specific way to prevent disease.
Find hidden red blood cells in the stool
- Advantages: simple, easy to implement
- Cons: there is a possibility of missing the tumor or polyps if the lesions do not cause bleeding, so this test requires annual testing. When there are hidden red blood cells in the stool, a colonoscopy is needed to confirm the diagnosis.
- Advantages: most valuable to detect tumors or polyps, and cut polyps to prevent cancer. Periodic endoscopy may be up to 10 years
- Disadvantages: high cost and difficult to universalize due to the lack of health workers
Subjects need screening
Low risk people
- There is no family history of colorectal cancer or colorectal polyps
- No chronic ulcerative colitis diseases
- There are no other family cancers
- Start screening from 50 years old to 75 years old
People at high risk
- Family history of colorectal cancer (parent, sibling, child): begin screening at age 40 or 10 years earlier than the youngest person with cancer (if the person has cancer) before 60 years old)
- Periodic colorectal screening every 5 years
- There is chronic ulcerative colitis: cancer screening begins in year 8 of seniority
Although the cause of colorectal cancer is not fully known, studies have found.
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