About Colon Cancer
The colon, also known as the large intestine, is the last part of your digestive system. Colon cancer can affect anyone of any age, but it is more common in older adults over the age of 50. It is also sometimes referred to as colorectal, rectal cancer, or bowel cancer, which notes cancers that start in the rectum that may then spread to the large intestine.
Colon cancer is most often characterized by the formation of precancerous colon polyps. These small, benign clumps of cells begin to form in the colon. Over time, the polyps may grow larger and become cancerous.
Causes and Risk Factors
As with other forms of cancer, colon cancer is caused by mutations in the DNA that result in the abnormal growth of cells within the colon. The exact cause of this genetic mutation is not known, though there may be a hereditary factor. A family history of colon cancer may increase the risk of a colon cancer diagnosis.
A large consumption of red or processed meats may also contribute to your risk of colon cancer. Increased consumption of meats cooked at high temperatures is also known to contribute to colon cancer. Diets that are also low in fiber but high in fats may also be associated with a higher risk of colon cancer.
Increased risk factors for developing colon cancer include inflammatory bowel diseases, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. This risk increases the longer that you have experienced an inflammatory bowel disease. Diabetes has also been shown to increase the risk of colon cancer.
Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging
In its early stages, colon cancer often presents no noticeable symptoms. Symptoms can vary based on the size of the tumor and where it is located in the colon. Common signs and symptoms of colon cancer include:
- Continuous bowel habit changes, including diarrhea, constipation, and changes in stool consistency
- Persistent abdominal pain, cramps, gas, or discomfort
- Sudden weight loss
- Bleeding in the rectum or bloody stools
- Feelings of incomplete bowel movements
- General weakness or fatigue
Health professionals highly recommend regular screening tests in healthy individuals as finding colon cancer at its earliest stages ensures the greatest chance for a cure. Diagnosing colon cancer usually includes a colonoscopy, which involves using a long, slender, flexible tube fitted with a camera at the end to view your rectum and colon. The doctor can also remove polyps or take biopsy samples for analysis.
While blood tests cannot outright determine if you have colon cancer, your doctor may still use blood tests for clues about your health. Colon cancers sometimes produce a chemical known as carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) that can be detected in the blood. Your doctor can then track CEA levels over time to determine how colon cancer patients are responding to standard treatment.
Metastatic colorectal cancer’s severity is categorized in stages 0 to IV. Lower stages mean that the cancer cells are still isolated to your colon, while stage IV colon cancer, known as the most advanced colorectal cancer stage, occurs when cancer spreads to other parts of the body and metastasizes. Certain imaging procedures can help to determine the stage, but doctors may not be able to conclusively determine your stage until after surgery.
Alternative Treatment for Colon Cancer
Types of standard treatment for colorectal cancer may include a combination of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, photodynamic therapy, and immunotherapy. However, there is a wide range of targeted therapy and alternative treatment plans that can support your recovery without the negative side effects of conventional colon cancer treatment. Immunity Therapy Center offers alternative treatment for colon cancer, including:
- Laser cancer treatment
- Sonodynamic therapy
- Enzymatic cancer therapy
- Vitamin and mineral supplements
Immunity Therapy Center offers a wide range of alternative therapies for colon cancer patients and other chronic conditions. Our team of health professionals are committed to completely personalized colon cancer treatment plans that are customized to your specific health needs and adjusted to adapt to changes.
One-on-one consultations with Dr. Bautista ensure that you are treated with respect and care. For more information or to find a targeted therapy option, adjuvant therapy and supported care suited for you, contact us today.Therapies we use
At Immunity Therapy Center, our goal is to provide objective, updated, and research-based information on all health-related topics. This article is based on scientific research and/or other scientific articles. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by Dr. Carlos Bautista, a Board Certified Medical Doctor at Immunity Therapy Center. All information published on the site must undergo an extensive review process to ensure accuracy. This article contains trusted sources with all references hyperlinked for the reader's visibility.
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