Digestive Disease Specialists
Gastroenterology Practice located in Moline, IL & Bettendorf, IA
Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in the United States. The experienced gastroenterology team at Digestive Disease Specialists offer preventive screenings and, if cancer is detected, exceptional treatment. Call the Moline, Illinois, or Davenport, Iowa, office to set up your appointment or use the online tool to learn more about colorectal cancer prevention and treatment.
Colorectal Cancer Q&A
What is colorectal cancer?
Colorectal cancer refers to cancer of the colon or rectum. You might know it simply as colon cancer.
Colon cancer can usually be detected early as noncancerous polyps that develop in the lining of your large intestine or rectum. If these polyps aren’t removed, they can turn cancerous.
This is why regular colonoscopies to look for cancerous or noncancerous polyps are important. When caught early, colorectal cancer is quite treatable.
What symptoms develop due to colorectal cancer?
In its early stages, colon cancer doesn’t cause symptoms. If your tumor grows or spreads, you may experience:
- Dark, tarry stool
- Bright red blood in the stool
- Abdominal pain
- Feelings of fullness or bloating
- Unexplained weight loss
Stool changes to be concerned about include regular diarrhea, narrow stools, constipation, or a change in your stool’s consistency. The symptoms you experience depend on the size and location of the cancer.
Am I at risk for colorectal cancer?
You are at a higher risk of developing colorectal cancer as you age.
Other risk factors include:
- Family or personal history of colon cancer
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Personal history of colon polyps
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Overweight and obesity
- Excessive alcohol use
Your diet can also play a possible role in your risk of developing colorectal cancer. People who eat a lot of red meat and processed meat have an increased chance of developing the disease.
What are the treatments for colorectal cancer?
At Digestive Disease Specialists, any unusual polyps can be removed during your colonoscopy. This prevents them from turning into cancer. If you have more advanced colorectal cancer, your provider performs surgery to remove the affected portion of your colon and any associated lymph nodes.
You may also need chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy to shrink the tumor before surgery. After surgery, these treatments may also be valuable to eliminate any remaining cancer cells.
If you’re concerned about colorectal cancer symptoms or have a family history of the disease, contact Digestive Disease Specialists today to set up an appointment. You can also use this website to reach out to the friendly staff online.
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