Friday, March 7th at 10AM
Colorectal cancer is cancer that starts in either the colon or the rectum. Colon cancer and rectal cancer have many features in common. Cancer that starts in these different areas may cause different symptoms. But colon cancer and rectal cancer have many things in common. In most cases, colorectal cancers develop slowly over many years.
There are many different risk factors that increase your chance of colorectal cancer. Your age is a big factor, family history of colorectal cancer, or having a history of inflammatory bowel diseases.
We now know that most of these cancers start as a polyp -- a growth of tissue that starts in the lining and grows into the center of the colon or rectum. This tissue may or may not be cancer.
The first line of defense against colorectal cancer is to get screened for it, even if you don’t have any symptoms of the disease. This is because some polyps, or growths, can be found and removed before they have the chance to turn into cancer.
Screening can also help find colorectal cancer early, when it is small and more likely to be cured.
Treating rectal cancer has generally required a somewhat invasive surgery with a sometimes difficult recovery period for patients that can last for several months. However, The Stephenson Cancer Center at OU Medical Center is one of what may be fewer than 100 facilities nationwide that perform a less invasive approach for patients here in Oklahoma with improved recovery and outcomes.
To learn more about colorectal cancer, its symptoms and treatments, join in our live video chat and visit the links provided on this page.
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