The Most Common Colon Cancer Risk Factors

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Colon cancer is a serious and deadly form of cancer that affects the large intestine, also known as the colon. The colon is the last part of the digestive tract and is responsible for the removal of waste from the body. 

It is estimated that colon cancer is the third most common type of cancer in the United States and is responsible for approximately 50,000 deaths each year. Colon cancer is most prevalent in people aged 50 and older, although it can occur at any age. 

Unfortunately, colon cancer symptoms will not manifest in the early stages of the disease. Also, the colon cancer symptoms that can appear can vary depending on the size of the cancer and its location in the large intestine.

Colon cancer usually begins with small, noncancerous (benign) clumps of cells called polyps that form on the inner lining of the colon. With time, some of these polyps can turn into cancer. To prevent colon cancer, regular screening tests are recommended. 

These tests can detect and remove precancerous polyps before they become cancerous. If colon cancer is found, there are numerous treatments available to help manage it, including surgery, radiation therapy, and drug treatments. 

Colon cancer is sometimes referred to as colorectal cancer, which combines colon cancer and rectal cancer that begins in the rectum. Although these two types of cancer have similar symptoms, they are two distinct diseases.

If you are at risk for colon cancer, it is important to speak with your doctor about your risk factors and determine if you should be screened for it. Early detection is key to successfully treating colon cancer, so don’t wait to get checked out.

Most Common Risk Factors for Colon Cancer

Colon cancer is a serious and potentially deadly form of cancer that affects the large intestine, and it can be difficult to diagnose or treat in its early stages. Unfortunately, there are several factors that may increase your risk of getting colon cancer. From age and race to inherited syndromes, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks that could lead to a diagnosis. 

Older Age

One of the most common factors that can increase your risk of colon cancer is age. Although it can be diagnosed at any age, the majority of people who are diagnosed with colon cancer are over the age of 50. In recent years, the rates of colon cancer among those younger than 50 have been on the rise, though the exact cause is not yet known.

African-American Race

Studies have found that African-Americans have a greater risk of developing colon cancer than any other race. This could be due to a variety of reasons, such as a lack of access to routine screening, lifestyle factors, or even a genetic predisposition. 

Personal History of Polyps or Cancer

A personal history of either colorectal cancer or polyps can also increase your risk of developing colon cancer in the future. Polyps are growths on the lining of the large intestine, and while they are often non cancerous, they can sometimes become cancerous. 

Inflammatory Intestinal Conditions

People who suffer from chronic inflammatory diseases in the colon, such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, are also at an increased risk of developing colon cancer. These types of conditions can cause a number of changes in the colon that can make it easier for cancer to form. 

Inherited Syndromes

Finally, certain gene mutations that are passed down through generations of your family can have a significant impact on your risk for colon cancer. These inherited syndromes can cause an increased risk of developing the disease, so it’s important to be aware of your family’s genetic history and talk to your doctor about any potential risks. 

By understanding the various factors that may increase your risk of colon cancer, you can take the necessary steps to reduce your risk and ensure your health is protected. Make sure to talk to your doctor if you are concerned about any of the risks outlined above, and get regular screenings if you are over the age of 50. Early detection and treatment of colon cancer can mean the difference between life and death.

 

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