This PDQ cancer information summary for health professionals provides comprehensive, peer-reviewed, evidence-based information about the genetics of colorectal cancer. It is intended as a resource to inform and assist clinicians who care for cancer patients. It does not provide formal guidelines or recommendations for making health care decisions.
Cancer of the colon is a highly treatable and often curable disease when localized to the bowel. Surgery is the primary form of treatment and results in cure in approximately 50% of the patients. Recurrence following surgery is a major problem and is often the ultimate cause of death.
Incidence and Mortality
Note: Estimated new cases and deaths from colon cancer in the United States in 2014:
New cases: 96,830 (colon cancer only).
Deaths: 50,310 (colon and rectal cancers combined)...
This summary is reviewed regularly and updated as necessary by the PDQ Cancer Genetics Editorial Board, which is editorially independent of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The summary reflects an independent review of the literature and does not represent a policy statement of NCI or the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Board members review recently published articles each month to determine whether an article should:
be discussed at a meeting,
be cited with text, or
replace or update an existing article that is already cited.
Changes to the summaries are made through a consensus process in which Board members evaluate the strength of the evidence in the published articles and determine how the article should be included in the summary.
Kathleen A. Calzone, PhD, RN, APNG, FAAN (National Cancer Institute)
Donald W. Hadley, MS, CGC (National Human Genome Research Institute)
Jennifer Lynn Hay, PhD (Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center)
Scott Kuwada, MD, AGAF, FACP (University of Hawaii)
Patrick M. Lynch, MD, JD (University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center)
Suzanne M. O'Neill, MS, PhD, CGC (Northwestern University)
Susan K. Peterson, PhD, MPH (University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center)
Miguel A. Rodriguez-Bigas, MD (University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center)
Danielle Kim Turgeon, MD (University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center)
Susan T. Vadaparampil, PhD, MPH (H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute)
Catharine Wang, PhD, MSc (Boston University School of Public Health)
Kevin Zbuk, MD, FRCPC (Margaret and Charles Juravinski Cancer Centre)
Any comments or questions about the summary content should be submitted to Cancer.gov through the Web site's Contact Form. Do not contact the individual Board Members with questions or comments about the summaries. Board members will not respond to individual inquiries.