Friday, December 11, 2015

Colon cancer

What is colon cancer?

Colon cancer, as the name suggests, is the cancer that initiates in the large intestine. In the initial stages, benign tumors known as adenomatous develop in the large intestine, which gradually becomes cancerous in nature.

What causes colon cancer?

The exact cause of colon cancer is not known. Uncontrolled growth of cells in the large intestine and rectum is known to cause colon cancer. One of the major reasons put forth for development of colon cancer is the growth of benign clumps of cells in the colon region. These cells later on become cancerous in nature giving rise to colon cancer. Yet another risk factor, that can cause colon cancer is inherited gene mutations.

How does colon cancer spread?

Colon cancer can spread to other body parts, when the cells begin to grow uncontrollably.

What are the symptoms of colon cancer?

In many instances, there are no accompanying signs and symptoms of colon cancer, until the disease has reached the advanced stages. In such circumstances, the signs and symptoms include the following:
  • Pain and tenderness in the abdominal region
  • Passing blood in stool
  • Undue weight loss
  • Sudden change in bowel habits
  • Onset of diarrhea or constipation
  •  Feeling of weakness or fatigue

What are the different stages of colon cancer?

Colon cancer progresses through the following stages:
Stage 0: In this stage, the cancer is restricted to the inner side of the colon.
Stage I: At this stage, the cancer has begun spreading to other linings of the colon, but has not metasized to other body parts.
Stage II: In stage II, the cancer has spread to the neighboring tissues, but have not spread to the lymph nodes.
Stage III: During this stage, the cancer has affected the lymph nodes, but has not spread to other body parts.
Stage IV: The cancer has begun spreading to other body parts and tissues.

What is the treatment of colon cancer?

Treatment of colon cancer depends on the stage at which the condition is diagnosed. For the preliminary stages, surgery remains the choice of treatment. If the cancer cells have metasized outside the colon, then partial colectomy is carried out. In advanced stages, surgery is often conducted to remove blockage from the colon in order to relieve the symptoms. Other treatment regimes, which are often employed along with surgical procedures include chemotherapy and radiation therapy. In addition to these methods, targeted drug therapy is the one that is known to target the defects that trigger the abnormal proliferation of cells.

How can colon cancer be prevented?

Individuals aged 50 years and above are considered to be at high risk of developing colon cancer. Therefore, it gets necessary to get regularly screened for the same after the age of 50. However, those with a  family history of colon cancer should begin the screening earlier. There are certain lifestyle factors that should also be changed in order to prevent colon cancer. These include eating a fiber rich diet, maintaining ideal body weight, quit smoking and reducing alcohol intake to a minimum.

Diet and lifestyle changes in colon cancer?

Eating right and healthy during and after cancer treatment is necessary. Having small and frequent meals will help relieve the nausea, which is a common symptom experienced by cancer patients. In addition, regular exercise will help relieve the stress and also help maintain a proper body weight.

What is Ayurvedic treatment of colon cancer?

Various herbs that have been found to be beneficial in the treatment of colon cancer include Ashwagandha, ginger root, turmeric, celandine, garlic and green tea.

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