Tag Archives: Colorectal Cancer

Diagnostics: Screening For Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. Colorectal cancer cannot be totally prevented, but there are ways to lower your risk and that’s with regular screening.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force and the American Cancer Society encourage patients to start screening for colorectal cancer at age 45. Dr. John Kisiel, a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist, also says patients should begin screening at 45. He recommends checking with your health care provider about your risks, and with your insurance provider about your coverage.

DR. C’S JOURNAL: CAUSES & SIGNS OF COLON CANCER

Colon cancer is one of the most common of all cancers, and one of the deadliest. Occurring out of sight in your intestinal tract, it often becomes advanced before it is first detected.

Any bowel symptoms, such as persistent diarrhea, constipation, or abdominal discomfort might be a warning symptom and indicate a trip to the doctor. Blood in the stools, either bright red or black and tarry, must be diagnosed. Unexplained weakness, fatigue, or weight loss might indicate cancer that is too far advanced for simple treatment, and of course requires a trip to the doctor.

The most satisfactory way to pick up the cancer is by a screening test called a colonoscopy. A virtual colonoscopy by x-ray is also used, but it still requires the most uncomfortable part of the procedure, the preparation; The bowel must be washed out in order to properly visualize the cancer, or more likely pre-cancerous polyps or growths.

Due to the increase in frequency of colon cancer in young people, the age at which screening colonoscopy is medically advisable has been lowered from 50 to 45. A tendency to get colon cancer, or more commonly colon polyps, can run in families. These are best discovered by colonoscopy starting at an earlier age.

Increased age, or chronic inflammatory conditions such as ulcerative colitis can predispose to colon cancer.  If you eat a lot of junk food (low fiber diet), or a lot of fat, You may be more susceptible. If you have a sedentary lifestyle, diabetes, smoke  or drink alcohol, you may be more likely to develop this problem.

As usual, preventative measures are the best advice. Eating a lot of fruits, vegetables and whole grains might protect you. Exercising most days of the week and maintaining a healthy weight are good ideas. Limiting your alcohol and stopping smoking is always good advice.

I was a good boy and had colonoscopies every two years for a long time. I would have been happier had there been a blood test to pick up this dreaded disease. There are some simple tests like carcinoembryonic antigen, and a stool test for occult(hidden) blood, but these are not very accurate.

For treatment of colorectal cancer and other more complete information, please check with the following mayo clinic article.

—Dr. C.

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Cancer: What Age Should You Get A Colonoscopy?

According to the American Cancer Society, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women in the United States. While diagnoses are decreasing in people over the age of 50, there’s been an increase for those who are younger.

For more information on why you should get a colonoscopy and how to schedule yours today, please visit https://cle.clinic/3oqWdy6

HARVARD STUDY: VITAMIN D LOWERS THE RISK OF YOUNG-ONSET COLORECTAL CANCER

COMMENTARY:

Vitamin D has many beneficial effects, but my comments will be restricted to the effect of vitamin D on cancer.

Interest in this association was started by the observation that certain cancers are less common near the equator, where there is more sunlight exposure, and therefore more natural vitamin D generation in your skin.
The most information on cancer in humans Is available on colorectal, breast, prostate, and pancreatic cancer. Colorectal cancer, highlighted DWW our posting, is the only cancer that apparently is affected by vitamin D.

Several studies have suggested that vitamin D can decrease cancer cell growth, stimulate cell death, and reduce cancer blood vessel formation. Increasing cell death, or apoptosis, is what interests me the most, since this is one of the factors which increases inflammation in aging.

The infographics stated that only 300 international units of vitamin D is necessary to produce a 50 Percent reduction in cancer, and that a healthy diet generally supplies this.

I personally take 5000 international units vitamin D. This produces a blood level of about 60 ng/mL, and what the NFL recommends to keep their players healthy, and well within the maximum recommended level of 120 ng/milliliter.

Excessive vitamin D can produce an elevated calcium blood level, and mine is within normal limits. I take the higher dose because of vitamin D’s other effects, such is benefiting the immune system in a time of Conid-19.

I suggest that you get a vitamin D blood level, and also a calcium blood level if you elect to take more of this useful vitamin.

–Dr. C

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MEDICINE: WHEN COLON CANCER SPREADS TO THE LIVER (MAYO CLINIC VIDEO)

Colorectal cancer is a leading cancer among men and women around the world. Many colorectal cancers are likely to spread to other organs, with the most common site of metastases being the liver. In this Mayo Clinic Minute, Dr. Sean Cleary, a hepatobiliary and pancreas surgeon at Mayo Clinic explains what this means to patients.

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PHYSICIAN Q&A: SCREENING FOR COLORECTAL CANCER

Colorectal cancer is comprised of colon cancer and rectal cancer, which originate in the lower portion of the large intestine and into the rectum. As with other cancers, screening for early detection should not be delayed. “The vast majority of the time, we don’t know exactly what causes any specific cancer,” says Dr. Jeremy Jones, a Mayo Clinic oncologist. “But there are a number of factors that can increase the risk of developing colon or rectal cancer.” Dr. Jones says one risk factor is increasing age. However, he adds that over the last 30 years younger patients have seen a 50% increased risk of developing colon and rectal cancers. In this Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Jones talks about risk factors, symptoms, treatment, health care disparities and the latest in colorectal cancer research. ____________________________________________

INFOGRAPHIC: A LOOK AT “CANCERS ASSOCIATED WITH OVERWEIGHT & OBESITY

There is consistent evidence that higher amounts of body fat are associated with increased risks of a number of cancers (6), including:

  • Endometrial cancer: Obese and overweight women are two to about four times as likely as normal-weight women to develop endometrial cancer (cancer of the lining of the uterus), and extremely obese women are about seven times as likely to develop the more common of the two main types of this cancer (7). The risk of endometrial cancer increases with increasing weight gain in adulthood, particularly among women who have never used menopausal hormone therapy (8).
  • Esophageal adenocarcinoma: People who are overweight or obese are about twice as likely as normal-weight people to develop a type of esophageal cancer called esophageal adenocarcinoma, and people who are extremely obese are more than four times as likely (9).
  • Gastric cardia cancer: People who are obese are nearly twice as likely as normal-weight people to develop cancer in the upper part of the stomach, that is, the part that is closest to the esophagus (10).
  • Liver cancer: People who are overweight or obese are up to twice as likely as normal-weight people to develop liver cancer. The association between overweight/obesity and liver cancer is stronger in men than women (1112).
  • Kidney cancer: People who are overweight or obese are nearly twice as likely as normal-weight people to develop renal cell cancer, the most common form of kidney cancer (13). The association of renal cell cancer with obesity is independent of its association with high blood pressure, a known risk factor for kidney cancer (14).
  • Multiple myeloma: Compared with normal-weight individuals, overweight and obese individuals have a slight (10% to 20%) increase in the risk of developing multiple myeloma (15).
  • Meningioma: The risk of this slow-growing brain tumor that arises in the membranes surrounding the brain and the spinal cord is increased by about 50% in people who are obese and about 20% in people who are overweight (16).
  • Pancreatic cancer: People who are overweight or obese are about 1.5 times as likely to develop pancreatic cancer as normal-weight people (17).
  • Colorectal cancer: People who are obese are slightly (about 30%) more likely to develop colorectal cancer than normal-weight people (18).A higher BMI is associated with increased risks of colon and rectal cancers in both men and in women, but the increases are higher in men than in women (18).
  • Gallbladder cancer: Compared with normal-weight people, people who are overweight have a slight (about 20%) increase in risk of gallbladder cancer, and people who are obese have a 60% increase in risk of gallbladder cancer (1920). The risk increase is greater in women than men.
  • Breast cancer: Many studies have shown that, in postmenopausal women, a higher BMI is associated with a modest increase in risk of breast cancer. For example, a 5-unit increase in BMI is associated with a 12% increase in risk (21). Among postmenopausal women, those who are obese have a 20% to 40% increase in risk of developing breast cancer compared with normal-weight women (22). The higher risks are seen mainly in women who have never used menopausal hormone therapy and for tumors that express hormone receptors. Obesity is also a risk factor for breast cancer in men (23).In premenopausal women, by contrast, overweight and obesity have been found to be associated with a 20% decreased risk of breast tumors that express hormone receptors (22).
  • Ovarian cancer: Higher BMI is associated with a slight increase in the risk of ovarian cancer, particularly in women who have never used menopausal hormone therapy (24). For example, a 5-unit increase in BMI is associated with a 10% increase in risk among women who have never used menopausal hormone therapy (24).
  • Thyroid cancer: Higher BMI (specifically, a 5-unit increase in BMI) is associated with a slight (10%) increase in the risk of thyroid cancer (25).

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COMMENTARY

Obesity increases the incidence of cancer, and complicates its treatment.
A healthy life style.,’including good sleep, diet and exercise, should prevent obesity in all but extreme genetic aberrations.

It is better to prevent problems than to grapple with them.
Stay healthy!

—Dr. C.