Colorectal Cancer - Types and Treatments

Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is cancer that occurs in the large intestine. The condition begins when healthy cells in the lining of the colon or rectum change or grow out of control.

Symptoms of colorectal cancer

  • Change in the bowel habits
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Persistent abdominal discomfort
  • Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool

Types of colorectal cancer

There are different types of colorectal cancer.
Colorectal adenocarcinoma: This cancer develops in the lining of the colon or rectum. It starts in the inner lining and spreads to other parts. There are two subtypes of adenocarcinoma; mucinous adenocarcinoma and signet ring cell adenocarcinoma.
Gastrointestinal carcinoid tumors: Carcinoid tumor cells may develop in the gastrointestinal tract or the lungs. They are slow-growing cells.
Colorectal lymphomas: This cancer develops in the lymphatic system, in the cells called lymphocytes. This type of colorectal cancer is more common in men as compared to women.
Gastrointestinal stromal tumors: It is a rare type of colorectal cancer that develops in the lining of gastrointestinal tract called interstitial cells.
Leiomyosarcomas: This is also a rare type of cancer that affects the smooth muscles in the colon. Bleeding and pain are some of the common symptoms of this condition.

Risk factors

  • Inflammatory intestinal conditions
  • Family history of colon cancer
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Smoking

Treatment options for colorectal cancer

Chemotherapy:
In this therapy, anti-cancer drugs are given to patients in order to destroy cancer cells. It can help to relieve the symptoms of colon cancer.
Radiation therapy:
During this therapy, powerful energy sources such as X-rays are used to kill cancer cells. It can also be given along with chemotherapy for treating rectal cancer.
Targeted drug therapy:
The aim of this therapy is to target specific genes or proteins in order to prevent cancer from growing. Targeted therapy is generally used along with other treatment options.
Immunotherapy:
Immunotherapy can help to improve the immune response against cancer cells.
These are some of the colorectal cancer treatment options. If colorectal cancer is detected at an early stage, it can be cured.