Do You Know The Symptoms Of Colorectal Cancer

The exact cause of most colon cancers is unknown. About 75% of these cancers occur in people who have no known risk factors. Colorectal cancer is often found after symptoms appear, but most people with early colon or rectal cancer don’t have symptoms of the disease. Symptoms usually only appear with more advanced disease. 

Do You Know The Symptoms Of Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is the third most common type of cancer in men and women and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The American Cancer Society estimates that 132,700 new cases of colorectal cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S. in 2015.

Some common symptoms of colorectal cancer are:

• A change in bowel habits, such as diarrhea or constipation.

• Frequent gas pains, cramps or bloating.

• Blood in the stool.

• Stools that are narrower than usual.

• Feeling that your bowel doesn’t empty completely.

• Unexplained weight loss.

• Feeling tired or weak.

Most often these symptoms are not due to cancer, but anyone experiencing these symptoms should see a physician to have them checked. If you are concerned about colorectal cancer, trust your gut and talk to your health care provider. Colorectal cancer screenings save lives.

(Sandy Tschosik is a registered nurse and has a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Manitoba, Canada. She is a CHI St. Alexius Health’s community health services coordinator.)

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5 Surprising Signs of Colon Cancer

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photo credit: Flickr/Moyan Brenn

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