It’s a question that has been asked for years: can women get colon cancer ( Colorectal cancer or CRC)? The answer is yes. In fact, according to the American Cancer Society, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in women, after breast and lung cancer. Each year, more than 106,000 women are diagnosed with colorectal cancer, and more than 41,000 die from the disease.
What is colon cancer?
Colon cancer is a type of cancer that starts in the colon or rectum. The colon is the large intestine, and the rectum is the end of the intestine. Cancer that begins in these organs is called colorectal cancer.
Colorectal cancer often begins as a small growth (polyp) on the lining of the colon or rectum. Polyps are not always cancerous, but some polyps can become cancerous over time. If left untreated, cancer cells can grow and spread throughout the body.
There are several risk factors, including age, family history, and lifestyle choices. However, there is no one cause of colorectal cancer. Anyone can develop the disease.
Symptoms of colorectal cancer in women
Symptoms of colorectal cancer in women can vary, depending on the location and size of the tumor. However, common symptoms include:
– Blood in the stool
– Persistent diarrhea or constipation
– Feeling like you need to have a bowel movement but can’t
– Abdominal pain or cramping
– Unexplained weight loss
If you experience these symptoms, it’s essential to see your doctor right away. Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial to successful outcomes for CRC.
Treatment options for colorectal cancer in women
The type of treatment that is best for you will depend on the size and location of the tumor and your overall health. Your doctor will work with you to create a treatment plan that meets your needs.
Surgery is often the first treatment for colorectal cancer. During surgery, the tumor and surrounding tissue are removed. Surgery may also be used to remove lymph nodes near cancer.
Chemotherapy is a type of medication that kills cancer cells. It is often used after surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells. Radiation therapy uses high-energy x-rays to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. This therapy may be used after surgery or operate in combination with chemotherapy.
How to reduce your risk of getting colon cancer?
There are several ways to reduce your risk of getting colon cancer. Some of these steps are:
– Eating a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables
– Exercising regularly
– Limiting alcohol intake
– Maintaining a healthy weight
– Avoiding tobacco smoke
Screening tests can help find cancer early when it is most treatable. It is also essential to get regular screenings for colon cancer. Talk to your doctor about which screening tests are proper for you.
Though anyone can develop colorectal cancer, several risk factors increase your chances of getting the disease. These include age, family history, and lifestyle choices. Symptoms of the disease vary depending on the size and location of the tumor. Still, they can include blood in stool, persistent diarrhea or constipation, abdominal pain or cramping, unexplained weight loss, or fatigue. Treatment options for colorectal cancer include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or a combination of these therapies. There are many different treatment plans available, and your doctor will work with you to create a treatment plan that meets your needs. It is vital to get regular screenings for colorectal cancer as early diagnosis and treatment are critical to successful outcomes.