Colon Cancer News

Colon cancer refers to a form of cancer that affects the main part of the large intestine, commonly called the colon. Sometimes, colon cancer is grouped together with cancer that affects the other part of the large intestine, the rectum, and referred to as colorectal cancer.

Colon cancer is a fairly common cancer. It affects both men and women, and the risk for developing colon cancer goes up in everyone after age 50. Other risk factors for developing colon cancer include a family history of cancer or colon cancer specifically, and a history of developing colorectal polyps, or growths. People with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis also have a higher colon cancer risk, as do those who smoke or eat diets high in fat and low in fiber, folate and calcium.

Screening and Prevention

The best way to detect colon cancer early and prevent the development of life-threatening cancer is to be screened for the disease. Screening is generally recommended for people 50 and older, though those at higher risk may need it earlier in life. Various tests can screen for colon cancer, including a fecal occult blood test and a digital rectal exam. However, colonoscopy and sigmoidoscopy are screening methods that can not only detect cancer at an early stage but also find and remove any precancerous polyps.

Symptoms of Colon Cancer

Colon cancer can be difficult to detect because the symptoms often overlap with other common medical conditions. When symptoms do occur, they’re usually related to the digestive tract. Common symptoms include diarrhea, constipation, bloody stools, narrower stools than usual or the feeling that your bowels are not completely empty. Colon cancer can also show itself with such symptoms as nausea, vomiting, fatigue, unexplained weight loss or gas and painful cramps.

Treatment

The primary method for treating colon cancer is surgery to remove the tumor. In some cases, this procedure can be done in a minimally invasive way with a long robotic arm that enters the body to remove the tumor. Other times, open surgery is required.

Often, additional treatments are needed to kill cancer cells at the site of the tumor or in surrounding tissues. These treatments may be in the form of radiation therapy, chemotherapy or biological therapy

SOURCES: American Cancer Society; U.S. National Cancer Institute.

Date Posted
Article Title
4/25/2017
Delay a Needed Colonoscopy at Your Own Risk

After a stool test shows potential trouble, speedy follow-up could be key, study finds

4/5/2017
Many Disabled Adults Aren't Screened for Colon Cancer: Study

Transportation issues, lack of awareness and other barriers may be at issue

4/5/2017
'Cancer Profile' Is Changing for Americans With HIV

AIDS-linked tumors predicted to decline by 2030

4/5/2017
Prolonged Antibiotic Use Tied to Precancerous Colon Growths

Drugs that alter gut bacteria might set stage for polyp development, researcher says

4/3/2017
Can Daily Low-Dose Aspirin Lower Cancer Death Risk?

Large U.S. study points to the drug's potential tumor-fighting abilities

3/31/2017
Survival Continues to Improve for Most Cancers

Still, more progress is needed and racial disparities remain, U.S. report finds

3/28/2017
High Doses of Vitamin D Fail to Cut Cancer Risk, Study Finds

Taking triple the daily recommendation didn't lower risk in older women, but larger trials are underway

3/22/2017
Keep Colon Cancer at Bay

Colonoscopy best way to detect disease while still curable, gastroenterologist says

3/1/2017
Colon Cancer Rates, Deaths Drop in Americans Over 50

Report suggests higher screening rates explain the positive trend

3/1/2017
Another Study Ties Obesity to Certain Cancers

Digestive organs may be hardest hit by too much weight, study suggests

2/28/2017
Colon Cancer on the Rise Among Gen Xers, Millennials

And an old adversary -- the obesity epidemic -- may be the cause, U.S. researchers say

2/1/2017
Heart Risks May Boost Women's Colon Cancer Risk, Too

This was true even in normal-weight women, study suggests

1/26/2017
Gut Bacteria May Link Diet, Colon Cancer, Study Says

High-fiber foods associated with lower risk of certain tumors

1/25/2017
Is Chemo Overused in Younger Colon Cancer Patients?

Study found the treatment often wasn't beneficial, but cancer expert says more research is needed

1/24/2017
U.S. Cancer Deaths Decline Over Three Decades

But clusters of high death rates remain in some pockets of the country, study finds

1/18/2017
Colon Cancer and Exercise

Daily physical activity linked to longer survival in colon cancer patients, according to new study.

1/17/2017
Even a Little Daily Activity May Boost Colon Cancer Survival: Study

Walking or gardening 30 minutes daily was linked to better prospects for advanced-stage disease

1/9/2017
Obamacare Boosts Breast Cancer Screening, Study Finds

Waiving costs appears to improve mammography rates, but not colonoscopy, even among the poor

1/5/2017
U.S. Cancer Death Rates Continue to Fall: Report

Researchers credit declines in smoking, better detection and treatment

12/21/2016
Vitamin E, Selenium Don't Cut Colon Cancer Risk: Study

The two antioxidants didn't help prevent polyps, researchers say

12/15/2016
Many Early Colon Cancers Linked to Inherited Genes

One in 6 diagnosed under 50 has at least one gene mutation that ups risk, study says

12/13/2016
Some Low-Income, Uninsured Patients Aren't Referred for Colonoscopy

Follow-up is not consistent, even if they're part of 'safety net' health program

11/7/2016
Additive in Processed Foods Tied to Colon Cancer in Mice

Emulsifiers may change intestinal bacteria and promote inflammation, researchers say

10/27/2016
Colon Cancer's Location May Determine Patient Survival

Study found 'right-sided' tumors had worse prognoses, with implications for screening and treatment

10/20/2016
Even for Men at High Risk, Healthy Living May Help Prevent Colon Cancer

Many lives could be saved if people avoided alcohol and smoking, ate better and stayed active, researchers report

10/17/2016
Little Gains in Efforts to Boost Outpatient Care

Large analysis finds declines or stagnation in many basic health measures

9/27/2016
To Help Prevent Colon Cancer, 'Listen to Your Gut'

Belly pain and black or bloody stools should not be ignored, doctor says

9/26/2016
Study: Colonoscopy After 75 May Not Be Worth It

But, expert says age shouldn't be only criterion for screening for colon cancer

8/30/2016
Vitamin A Compound Might Aid in Colon Cancer Fight

Researchers studying connection between retinoic acid and inflammation in gut

8/12/2016
Cancer Survivors More Prone to Obesity, Study Finds

Risk appears to be particularly high for people who had breast or colon cancer

8/10/2016
Regular Exercise: Antidote for Deadly Diseases?

High levels of physical activity linked to lower risk for two cancers, diabetes, heart disease and stroke

7/21/2016
Omega-3s in Fish Tied to Better Colon Cancer Outcomes

Study couldn't prove cause-and-effect, however, so experts believe more data is needed

7/8/2016
Could Statins Help Fight Cancer?

Study found an association -- but no proof -- of prolonged survival

7/7/2016
Researchers Get Closer to Test Predicting Colon Cancer's Return

DNA-based screen would aid treatment decisions for people with early-stage disease

7/4/2016
Regular Doctor Visits Can Help Spot Colon Cancer

Early detection improves likelihood of survival, researchers note

6/24/2016
Five New Genes Linked to Colon Cancer

But researchers say it's likely that all the major genetic mutations have been discovered

6/23/2016
Healthy Living Slashes Cancer Risk

The 'good' life cuts tumor odds up to 45 percent and risk of cancer death up to 61 percent, study finds

6/15/2016
Expert Panel Reaffirms Need for Colon Cancer Screen Beginning at Age 50

U.S. advisory group says there's not enough evidence to endorse one screening method over another

6/6/2016
Useless Treatments Common in Young, Terminal Cancer Patients

3 in 4 get aggressive therapies with painful side effects in last months of their lives, study finds

6/6/2016
Liquid Biopsy May Help Doctors Track Changes in Tumors

Large study found it predicted when cancer DNA was mutating, could help tailor treatments to avoid drug resistance

6/3/2016
Aspirin and Colon Cancer

Does aspirin use help patients diagnosed with colon cancer?

6/2/2016
Low-Dose Aspirin Tied to Longer Colon Cancer Survival

Study found most benefit seen in those taking the drug before their cancer diagnosis

5/27/2016
Make That Memorial Day BBQ Tasty -- and Safe

Cooking meat at high temperatures can release harmful chemicals, but a few precautions help, nutritionist says

5/25/2016
Common Abnormal Heart Rhythm Linked to Cancer Risk

But study only found an association and doesn't prove that atrial fibrillation causes cancer

5/25/2016
Colon Cancer On the Rise in Younger Adults

More adults under the age of 50 are being diagnosed with colon cancer, new study finds.

5/24/2016
Colon Cancer Rising in People Under 50

Incidence up more than 10 percent in 10 years among Americans, study finds

5/24/2016
Time to Drop the 'No-Eating Rule' Before Colonoscopy?

Consuming limited amount of low-fiber food day before didn't disrupt procedure, study finds

5/19/2016
A Little Excess Weight May Boost Colon Cancer Survival

Researchers saw an effect, but experts stress that heavier people also have higher odds of getting cancer

5/18/2016
Tumor Location Affects Colon Cancer Survival: Study

It found that patients with tumors on the left side lived longer than those with malignancies on the right

5/12/2016
Is Ovary Removal Tied to Colon Cancer Risk?

Loss of female hormones may explain potential association, researchers say