Colon cancer, also known as Colorectal cancer or CRC, is a type of cancer that occurs in the colon or rectum. Colorectal cancers are often slow-growing and typically don’t cause any symptoms until they’ve grown quite large. CRC usually develops from adenomatous polyps, which are growths on the inner lining of your colon. Colonoscopy, a procedure involving an examination of the inside of your colon with a thin, flexible tube inserted through your anus, can help detect these polyps before they become malignant and allow for removal if necessary.
Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States, but it can be cured if it’s caught early. Symptoms of colon cancer include changes in bowel habits (such as diarrhea or constipation), blood in your stool, abdominal pain, and unexplained weight loss. If you experience any of these symptoms, see your doctor right away.
The American Cancer Society recommends you start getting screened for colorectal cancer when you turn 50 years old; however, other factors may be considered, such as family history or personal habits (such as smoking).
Why Are Men Above 50 More At Risk?
Colonoscopy is essential because it can detect and prevent CRC and because the chance of colon cancer increases with age. Colonoscopies are necessary after 50 to detect polyps in the colon that may become malignant without symptoms.
– Colonoscopies allow doctors to inspect your intestine’s inner lining for signs of colorectal cancer or signs of pre-cancerous growths called adenomatous polyps
– Colonic growths such as adenomas occur more frequently in adults over 50 years old due to their diet and dental regimen
– Neglecting Colonoscopies before the age of fifty can lead you down a path towards life-threatening colon cancer
– Colonoscopies are a preventative measure as well as a diagnostic tool. If you are over 50, it is vital to have a Colonoscopy done at least every ten years.
What Colon Cancer Symptoms Should I Look Out For?
Colorectal Cancer can cause various symptoms, but many people with the disease don’t experience any symptoms until the cancer is quite advanced. The most common colon cancer symptoms include changes in bowel habits (such as diarrhea or constipation), blood in your stool, abdominal pain, and unexplained weight loss. If you experience any of these symptoms, see your doctor right away. CRC is a severe disease, but it can be cured if it’s caught early.
How Do I Prepare for a Colonoscopy?
Colonoscopies are typically a safe and outpatient procedure, but there are a few things you need to do to prepare for it. Colonoscopies usually require that you “clear out” your bowels in preparation for the procedure. This is done by drinking a particular laxative solution that will cleanse your intestines of any fecal matter.
You may also be asked to avoid eating solid foods for a day or two before the procedure. Be sure to strictly follow your doctor’s instructions, as not following them could increase your risk of complications.
What Happens During a Colonoscopy?
A Colonoscopy is a procedure that involves an examination of the inside of your colon with a thin, flexible tube inserted through your anus. The Colonoscopy tube is equipped with a camera and light, which allows your doctor to see any abnormalities in your colon.
Your doctor may remove any polyps during the Colonoscopy if any polyps are found. Colonoscopies typically last about 30 minutes, and you can go home shortly afterward. You will likely experience some discomfort and bloating after the procedure, but this will pass in a few days.
How Often Should I Have a Colonoscopy?
The American Cancer Society recommends that adults over 50 have a Colonoscopy every ten years. However, you may need to start Colonoscopy screenings earlier if there is a history of colon cancer in your family or if you have other risk factors. Talk to your doctor to see what is best for you.
Colorectal Cancer is a severe disease, but it can be cured if it’s caught early. Colonoscopies are an essential tool in the fight against colon cancer, so don’t neglect them. Be sure to talk to your doctor about Colonoscopy screenings if you are over 50.