When To Seek Medical Help
Since diarrhea is such a common condition, many people do not consult a doctor when they experience it. However, now that you understand that diarrhea can be a cancer symptom, you must be more observant.
Go to the doctor right away if you:
- Are suffering from 6 or more loose, watery stool in a day for 2 days or more
- Have dizziness while suffering from diarrhea
- See blood in your stool or your rectal area
- Have diarrhea or cramps for more than a day
- Are already experiencing weight loss due to diarrhea
- Develop difficulty in controlling your bowel movement
- Develop a fever of 38 C or higher
Remember that diarrhea, especially when its chronic, can lead to severe dehydration. For this reason, seek medical help if you suspect signs of dehydration such as dark urine, dry skin, sunken eyes, and rapid breathing and heartbeat.
Additionally, talk to your doctor, too, if your diarrhea is making it difficult for you to perform activities of daily living.
What Is The First Symptom Of Colon Cancer
The first symptom of colon cancer is usually a change in your colon habits
AKA having diarrhea or constipation.
The second most common symptom of colon cancer is blood in your stools. This blood may be fresh red or dark red up to a black colored stool.
It comes when the cancer mass inside the colon starts to bleed, usually starts with very small amounts of bleeding. So, the blood coming with stool can be missed by many people hence its amount is small. So, do have care for yourself and always check for your stool color.
You may not notice frank bleeding, but only dots of bleeding within your stool.
Other symptoms include feeling always fatigued usually due to anemia from the blood loss
Also, some people can feel a mass inside their rectumi or their abdomen but it is rare
To give you an overview of the common symptoms associated with colon cancer look at the list below search shows the percentage of each symptom in colon cancer :
1. Having constipation or diarrhea occurs in 75% of colon cancer patients
2. Dark or bright red blood in stool found in about 50% of colon cancer patients
3. rectali mass in about 25%
4. Anemia and iron deficiency in about 10%
5. Isolated abdominal pain only 3.8%
Also, other general symptoms may be present like:
- Unexplained fever.
Risk Factors For Colon Cancer
In addition to being aware of symptoms, you should discuss colon cancer screenings with your physician if you have any of the following risk factors:
- Having a personal history of colon or rectal cancer, adenomatous polyps, chronic inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease
- Having a strong family history of colon or rectal cancer, or polyps, especially a first-degree relative such as a parent, sibling or child or multiple second-degree relatives
Finally, be aware that certain lifestyle factors may also increase your risk for colon cancer:
- Diets high in meat and low in fruits, vegetables and whole grains
- Heavy alcohol intake
- Physical inactivity
Want to learn more about Fight Colorectal Cancer?
Simon, S. . American Cancer Society Updates Colorectal Cancer Screening Guideline. Accessed June 10, 2019.
It is important to know that the information in this post, including Sarah Cannons recommendations for screening, is accurate as of the publishing date.
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Signs Of Colon Cancer
Do you know the signs of colon cancer? Being aware may save your life. Colon cancer is the third most common cancer in men and women across Europe and the USA. Read on and find out what to look out for.
The colon is another name for the large bowel and cancer can be found in different parts of the colon and the rectum . Sometimes you will hear the term colorectal cancer which is a term covering both areas or simply bowel cancer.
The over sixties are most at risk but it can be diagnosed at any age. Survival rates are now good if the cancer is caught early so knowing what to look for is very important and when you discover those early signs of colon cancer you must act quickly. Ninety percent of people diagnosed will survive five years or longer if the cancer is caught early.
Ibs Or Colon Cancer: Signs You Shouldn’t Ignore
MD, Assistant lecturer of internal medicine, Gastro-enterology, & Hepatology.IBS sufferer, Gut health enthusiast, and writer.
Your health matters, my content is not a substitute for the medical advice by your doctor. #Stay_Safe
Many times we -IBS sufferers- get confused about our gut pain.
Sometimes we expect the worst .
But you dont have to worry too much, as this may worsen your IBS
You only turn the red lights on when:
- Having blood in your stools
- Losing weight more frequently
- Having a feeling of incomplete emptying or a mass in your rectumi
- Vomiting a lot are getting a recurrent fever of unknown origin
Your abdominal pain or recurrent attacks of diarrhea alone is not a specific sign of colon cancer. So dont worry about them.
Actually, many cases of colon cancer have no symptoms. so you have to screen.
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A Change In Bowel Habit
So now we get to diarrhea which is the main focus of this website. Of course most people with chronic diarrhea or diarrhea symptoms do not have colon cancer as there are many causes of diarrhea but if your bowel habits have changed and you have developed persistent loose stools or constipation or both which has lasted for longer than 3 weeks then you should seek advice.
If your back passage still feels full even after you have had a bowel movement you should ask for evaluation, as this is also one of the bowel cancer symptoms.
Another one of the signs of colon cancer to be aware of is stools that are thin and ribbon shaped. This shape can be a sign that the width of the bowel is narrowed by a growth or other obstruction.
So really think about what your personal bowel habits are like and if you have seen a change which has persisted for more than three weeks it is time to see your doctor. A change in bowel habit is one of the most common signs of colon cancer.
Are Your Symptoms Ibs Or Colorectal Cancer
Colorectal cancer shares some symptoms with a less serious, but much more common disease: irritable bowel syndrome . So how do you know if your symptoms are cancer, IBS or something else?
We talked to David Richards, M.D., about the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and colorectal cancer, and what action you should take if you are experiencing either.
What are the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome?
IBS can be hard to diagnose. Its not something a doctor can see, feel or detect under a microscope, and the symptoms come and go. The main symptoms of IBS are constipation, diarrhea or a combination of the two, accompanied by abdominal pain.
Someone with IBS may also experience one or more of the following:
- Abdominal bloating
- The feeling that you havent finished a bowel movement
- Relief of symptoms after a bowel movement
You can gauge whether these are IBS symptoms based on how long youve had them. The symptoms have to go back at least six months, with at least one day a week of pain in the last three months, Richards says.
What are the symptoms of colorectal cancer?
Diarrhea, constipation and abdominal pain are all symptoms of colorectal cancer. However, there are additional symptoms that are more concerning.
Sudden and unexplained weight loss, rectal bleeding or blood in the stool are all cause for concern, says Richards.
Other colorectal cancer symptoms include:
I would be especially concerned if these symptoms came on suddenly, says Richards.
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Unexplained Weight Loss Loss Of Appetite And Feeling Weak
Losing weight, losing your appetite or feeling weak are all possible signs of colon or rectal cancer along with many other unrelated conditions. In patients with colon or rectal cancer, these symptoms are usually related. Persistent diarrhea can cause weight loss. Stomach pain and nausea can reduce your appetite so that you dont consume enough food to maintain your weight. All these issues, as well as anemia, can lead to weakness.
Not Having Any Symptoms At All
Keep in mind, that many people who are diagnosed with colon cancer report having no symptoms prior to their diagnosis. Over 45? Family history of colorectal cancer? Dont wait for symptoms to occur before you get screened. Talk to your physician or primary care provider to get more information about screening options.
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The Colon Cancer Pain Vs Ibs Pain
You may be wondering if the pain of the IBS is different from the pain of colon cancer?
To answer this question, I dug into research papers and I found a shocking fact
your abdominal pain is not the thing to worry about.
Studies found that abdominal pain is a single symptom is the least common sign of cancer colon less than 4% .
People always get worried about their abdominal pain. But abdominal pain is not a thing to worry about when coming to colon cancer Unless your pain is not typical for IBS.
Unlike IBS, abdominal pain from colon cancer attends to be:
- dull constant pain,
- usually not related to meals
While the IBS pain is:
- fluctuant colicky pain.
Local Symptoms Of Colorectal Cancer
Local symptoms are those that affect only the colon and/or rectum and have not spread to distant organs. Common local symptoms include:
- Alternating diarrhea and constipation, or other changes in bowel habits
- Rectal bleeding or blood in the stool
- Abdominal bloating, cramps or discomfort
- A feeling that the bowel doesn’t empty completely
- Stools that are thinner than normal
If you experience these possible symptoms of colorectal cancer for an extended period of time, it is important that you visit a health care professional.
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Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Symptoms
Patients with metastatic colorectal cancer may not always notice symptoms before a diagnosis. Metastatic colorectal cancer symptoms may depend on the size of the tumor or tumors and where the cancer has spread outside the colon or rectum. For instance:
If the bones are affected, symptoms may include pain, fractures, constipation and/or high calcium levels.
If the lungs are affected, symptoms may include shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, coughing, pain and/or fatigue.
If the liver is affected, symptoms may include nausea, fatigue, swelling of the feet and hands, increased abdominal girth and/or jaundice.
If the lymph nodes of the abdomen are affected, it may cause bloating, a swollen belly and/or loss of appetite.
If the brain and/or spinal cord are affected, symptoms may include pain, confusion, memory loss, headache, blurred or double vision, difficulty speaking and/or seizures.
Signs Of Colon Cancer You Shouldnt Ignore
Excluding skin cancers, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in the United States. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms described in this article, it is best to talk to your doctor. It could be nothing, but it is worth the peace of mind by getting checked out.
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network recommends starting regular screening at age 50. Learn more about colorectal cancer screenings from UnityPoint Health St. Lukes Hospital.
Its important to first understand risk factors. Many lifestyle-related factors have been linked to colon cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, the links between diet, weight and exercise and colon cancer risk are some of the strongest for any type of cancer.
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Can Ibs Cause Colon Cancer
The short answer is NO.
However, people with IBS-C may have a small risk due to the prolonged presence of stool inside the intestine allowing toxins to irritate the colon lining and affecting the cells at its wall.
According to the American Colleague of Gastroenterology, the risk of colorectali cancer is linked to chronic constipation, not the IBS.
If you have IBS-C you can avoid this by the use of anti-constipation agents and colon detoxes.
The main problem of IBS is the misdiagnosis of colon cancer
In other words
although IBS itself doesnt carry a risk for colon cancer, its symptoms may mask the diagnosis of cancer.
How to solve this problem?
The two main actions you should take to avoid colorectali cancer while you have IBS are:
The first: is to learn more about colon cancer in order to assess your risk.
The Second is to take steps to protect yourself from getting colon cancer.
Keep reading we will discuss both steps.
Colorectal Cancer Signs And Symptoms
Colorectal cancer might not cause symptoms right away, but if it does, it may cause one or more of these symptoms:
- A change in bowel habits, such as diarrhea, constipation, or narrowing of the stool, that lasts for more than a few days
- A feeling that you need to have a bowel movement that’s not relieved by having one
- Rectal bleeding with bright red blood
- Blood in the stool, which might make the stool look dark brown or black
- Cramping or abdominal pain
- Weakness and fatigue
- Unintended weight loss
Colorectal cancers can often bleed into the digestive tract. Sometimes the blood can be seen in the stool or make it look darker, but often the stool looks normal. But over time, the blood loss can build up and can lead to low red blood cell counts . Sometimes the first sign of colorectal cancer is a blood test showing a low red blood cell count.
Some people may have signs that the cancer has spread to the liver with a large liver felt on exam, jaundice , or trouble breathing from cancer spread to the lungs.
Many of these symptoms can be caused by conditions other than colorectal cancer, such as infection, hemorrhoids, or irritable bowel syndrome. Still, if you have any of these problems, its important to see your doctor right away so the cause can be found and treated, if needed. See Tests to Diagnose Colorectal Cancer.
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Symptoms Of Colorectal Cancer
Unfortunately, colorectal cancer may strike without symptoms. For this reason, it is very important to have regular examinations, called colorectal screenings, to detect early problems.
However, not all colorectal cancers are without symptoms. One of the early symptoms of colon cancer may be bleeding. Often, tumors bleed only small amounts, off and on, and evidence of the blood is found only during chemical testing of the stool. When tumors have grown larger, other symptoms may develop. They include:
Feeling Bloated Or A Feeling Of Discomfort Or Persistent Urge To Have A Bowel Movement
The constant feeling that you need to have a bowel movement and the feeling is not relieved by having one could indicate changes in your colon preventing a complete bowel evacuation or the feeling of stool remaining even if the bowel is empty. Contact your physician to be evaluated and determine the cause.
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Get Expert Advice And Care At Ctca
Understanding when symptoms are a sign of something serious and either diagnosing the disease or confirming a previous diagnosis require expertise from specialists trained and experienced in treating colorectal cancer. At Cancer Treatment Centers of America® , our colorectal cancer experts treat all stages of the disease.
Causes Of Bowel Cancer
Cancer occurs when the cells in a certain area of your body divide and multiply too rapidly. This produces a lump of tissue known as a tumour.
Most cases of bowel cancer first develop inside clumps of cells on the inner lining of the bowel. These clumps are known as polyps. However, if you develop polyps, it does not necessarily mean you will get bowel cancer.
Exactly what causes cancer to develop inside the bowel is still unknown. However, research has shown several factors may make you more likely to develop it. These factors are outlined below.
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Is Frequent Diarrhea A Sign Of Cancer
Medically reviewed by Dr. Kenneth Knowles, MD on July 16th, 2021
Is Frequent Diarrhea a Sign of Cancer?
Diarrhea is a commonyet extremely unpleasantcondition. Although diarrhea is usually characterized by frequent loose or watery bowel movements, it can also cause symptoms such as a fever, abdominal pain and cramping, bloating, and nausea.
Is Diarrhea A Sign Of Colon Cancer
Diarrhea alone is not a specific sign of colon cancer.
Diarrhea became a sign of colon cancer and when it is accompanied by some warning signs like:
- bloody stools
- severe nausea
- recurrent fever
So, if you have the classical picture of IBS that includes abdominal pain and diarrhea dont worry too much.
Only worry if diarrhea becomes prolonged, non-responding to usual IBS medications or have the above-mentioned warning signs.
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