Monday, March 9, 2009
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Dr. Edward Hill discusses some facts about colorectal cancer and who it affects in todayís 60 Second Housecall.
Colon and rectal cancers are malignant tumors that develop in the digestive tract. The two cancers are often referred to together as colorectal cancer.
In the United States, colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of all cancer deaths. Colorectal cancer most often strikes men and women over age 50. Although the exact cause is still unclear, experts believe most cases begin as polyps on the outer wall of the colon or rectum. If not removed, some polyps can develop into cancer. Polyps are easily detected with screening tests and often removed during the same procedures. Colorectal cancer may be curable if discovered early.
Treatment for colon cancer may include surgery to remove the cancer, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. The long-term outcome and choice of treatment for colon cancer usually depends on whether the cancer is in the colon or rectum, the stage of the cancer and the personís age and health.
For North Mississippi Medical Center, Iím Dr. Edward Hill.