Colon cancer is the sixth most common of all the cancers. It is said to be more dominant in males than it is in females. Most of the people who are diagnosed with colon cancer usually have a family history of colon cancer. They also have a high intake of fat in their diets.
The colon is part of our body’s digestive system. Together with the intestines – both large and small, they store waste before it is secreted. Colon cancer usually starts with tumors that grow in the large intestine, which if not removed by surgery or colonoscopy may develop into carcinogens (cancer cells). What’s worse is that if these benign polyps aren’t removed, they could spread to other organs and infect them as well. This process is called metastasis.
Here’s how to understand some of the treatments:
- Surgery. This is done when polyps are still benign. Meaning, the cells haven’t formed into cancerous ones and can very well be removed with colonoscopy. If not, surgery should be scheduled to avoid metastasis. As long as these tumors are localized, they can be removed by surgery easily.
- Chemotherapy. It is recommended to people who want to avoid tumor growth or at least slow its progress. It also lessens the risk of metastasis, or the spreading of the tumors to the other parts or organs of the body.
- Radiotherapy. This process is not commonly used for colon cancer patients. There are times though that hospitals use chemotherapy agents together with radiotherapy in order to increase the effectiveness of radiation.
- Immunotherapy. This is the type of therapy wherein an outside agent is introduced to the patient’s immune system to help build antibodies that can prevent or work to eliminate cancer cells.
Colon cancer, or any kind of cancer for that matter, is not just a physical battle. It also has a big impact on people’s emotions. Here are 2 common ways to help a colon cancer patient get back on track:
- Counseling. Most cancer facilities and hospitals offer counseling to their patients. Doctors make sure that patients are reassured that they can still be cured. A sunny disposition often helps in the recovery.
- Cancer support groups. It is always nice to have someone to talk to about things like this. It is best if the cancer patient gets involved in support groups. Who better to understand them than the people who’re also going through the same thing, right?
Most of the colon cancer symptoms are overlooked because they may sound normal or they may be passed on as something else. Regular check ups are a must since there are times that cancers don’t show symptoms, which can be detected at an early stage for it to be treated.
Going through this is never easy, whether it’s someone you know or if you’re going through it yourself. It’s best to always be alert for possible symptoms and also live and eat healthy in order to avoid all kinds of sickness!