Colon is also known as a large bowel or large intestine. Colon cancer is the cancer of large intestine which is the ending part of your digestive tract. In many cases the colon cancer does not show any warnings or symptoms until it has reached an advanced stage. However, it usually beings with a small, benign (noncancerous) clump of cells called adenomatous polyps and over the time some of these polyps become cancerous.
The signs and the symptoms of colon cancer include:
Changes in your bowel habits
Every once in a while, we all experience changes in our bowels. We may experience constipation or diarrhoea due to uneven eating habits or being sick with something like flu. But the changes in bowel habits that continue for a long time like diarrhoea for more than a week may indicate a serious condition. Other changes in the bowel habits like changes in the appearance of the stool or having a narrow stool and if it looks pencil-thin or different, you really need to talk to your doctor.
Lowering of red blood cell counts in the body states anaemia. In colon cancer, anaemia is caused by a microscopic amount of blood loss in the stool which also adds to loss of iron in the body. The production of red blood cells is reduced and in due course the total red blood cell counts also decreases causing anaemia.
A drop in a weight loss is usually a celebration but if there is no explanation for a substantial amount of weight loss, it could be a bit scary. Generally, in colon cancer, unexplained weight loss does not occur till the cancer reaches the advanced stage. The diarrhoea with some changes in the bowel habits contribute to a significant weight loss.
Almost everyone experiences bloating, abdominal pain or cramps somewhere in their life. They are usually not caused by a serious condition, but the severity of the pain can reflect the seriousness of the condition that is causing the pain. However, if you experience any uncertain or unfamiliar abdominal pain, it is highly recommended that you get it checked by your doctor.
If you notice any symptoms of colon cancer, do not hesitate to make an appointment with your doctor.