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Colorectal Cancer Health Center

Medical Reference Related to Colorectal Cancer

  1. Colorectal Cancer Prevention (PDQ®): Prevention - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Questions or Comments About This Summary

    If you have questions or comments about this summary, please send them to Cancer.gov through the Web site's Contact Form. We can respond only to email messages written in English.

  2. Colon Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Stage Information for Colon Cancer

    Treatment decisions should be made with reference to the TNM classification [1] rather than to the older Dukes or the Modified Astler-Coller classification schema.The American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) and a National Cancer Institute–sponsored panel recommended that at least 12 lymph nodes be examined in patients with colon and rectal cancer to confirm the absence of nodal involvement by tumor.[2,3,4] This recommendation takes into consideration that the number of lymph nodes examined is a reflection of the aggressiveness of lymphovascular mesenteric dissection at the time of surgical resection and the pathologic identification of nodes in the specimen. Retrospective studies demonstrated that the number of lymph nodes examined in colon and rectal surgery may be associated with patient outcome.[5,6,7,8]AJCC Stage Groupings and TNM DefinitionsThe AJCC has designated staging by TNM classification to define

  3. Colorectal Cancer Prevention (PDQ®): Prevention - Patient Information [NCI] - Colorectal Cancer Prevention

    Avoiding risk factors and increasing protective factors may help prevent cancer.Avoiding cancer risk factors may help prevent certain cancers. Risk factors include smoking, being overweight, and not getting enough exercise. Increasing protective factors such as quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, and exercising may also help prevent some cancers. Talk to your doctor or other health care professional about how you might lower your risk of cancer.The following risk factors increase the risk of colorectal cancer:AgeThe risk of colorectal cancer increases after age 50. Most cases of colorectal cancer are diagnosed after age 50.Family history of colorectal cancerHaving a parent, brother, sister, or child with colorectal cancer doubles a person's risk of colorectal cancer.Personal historyHaving a personal history of inflammatory bowel disease increases the risk of colorectal cancer. Inherited riskThe risk of colorectal cancer is increased when certain gene changes linked to familial

  4. Rectal Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Stage IV and Recurrent Rectal Cancer

    Treatment options for local control:Resection of locally recurrent rectal cancer may be curative in selected patients.[1]Palliative surgical resection with either low-anterior resection (LAR) or abdominoperineal resection (APR).[1] Palliative radiation therapy.[2,3]Palliative chemotherapy.[4,5,6,7,8,9,10]Palliative chemoradiation.[11,12]Chemotherapy alone for local control.Palliative, endoscopic-placed stents to relieve obstruction.[13]Treatment options for systemic control:Resection of liver metastases in selected patients (5-year cure rate with resection of solitary metastases exceeds 20%).[14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23]Resection of isolated pulmonary or ovarian metastases.Systemic chemotherapy (see below).Clinical trials evaluating new drugs.Metastatic Rectal CancerTreatment of patients with recurrent or advanced colorectal cancer depends on the location of the disease. For patients with locally

  5. Rectal Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - Changes to This Summary (05 / 12 / 2014)

    The PDQ cancer information summaries are reviewed regularly and updated as new information becomes available. This section describes the latest changes made to this summary as of the date above.Editorial changes were made to this summary.

  6. Colorectal Cancer Screening (PDQ®): Screening - Patient Information [NCI] - About This PDQ Summary

    About PDQPhysician Data Query (PDQ) is the National Cancer Institute's (NCI's) comprehensive cancer information database. The PDQ database contains summaries of the latest published information on cancer prevention, detection, genetics, treatment, supportive care, and complementary and alternative medicine. Most summaries come in two versions. The health professional versions have detailed information written in technical language. The patient versions are written in easy-to-understand, nontechnical language. Both versions have cancer information that is accurate and up to date and most versions are also available in Spanish.PDQ is a service of the NCI. The NCI is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). NIH is the federal government's center of biomedical research. The PDQ summaries are based on an independent review of the medical literature. They are not policy statements of the NCI or the NIH.Purpose of This SummaryThis PDQ cancer information summary has current

  7. Rectal Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - About This PDQ Summary

    About PDQPhysician Data Query (PDQ) is the National Cancer Institute's (NCI's) comprehensive cancer information database. The PDQ database contains summaries of the latest published information on cancer prevention, detection, genetics, treatment, supportive care, and complementary and alternative medicine. Most summaries come in two versions. The health professional versions have detailed information written in technical language. The patient versions are written in easy-to-understand, nontechnical language. Both versions have cancer information that is accurate and up to date and most versions are also available in Spanish.PDQ is a service of the NCI. The NCI is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). NIH is the federal government's center of biomedical research. The PDQ summaries are based on an independent review of the medical literature. They are not policy statements of the NCI or the NIH.Purpose of This SummaryThis PDQ cancer information summary has current

  8. Colorectal Cancer Screening (PDQ®): Screening - Health Professional Information [NCI] - About This PDQ Summary

    Purpose of This SummaryThis PDQ cancer information summary for health professionals provides comprehensive, peer-reviewed, evidence-based information about colorectal cancer screening. 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.Reviewers and UpdatesThis summary is reviewed regularly and updated as necessary by the PDQ Screening and Prevention 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, orreplace or update an existing article that is already cited.Changes to the summaries are made through a consensus process in

  9. Colon Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - Treatment Option Overview

    There are different types of treatment for patients with colon cancer. Different types of treatment are available for patients with colon cancer. Some treatments are standard (the currently used treatment), and some are being tested in clinical trials. A treatment clinical trial is a research study meant to help improve current treatments or obtain information on new treatments for patients with cancer. When clinical trials show that a new treatment is better than the standard treatment, the new treatment may become the standard treatment. Patients may want to think about taking part in a clinical trial. Some clinical trials are open only to patients who have not started treatment. Six types of standard treatment are used:SurgerySurgery (removing the cancer in an operation) is the most common treatment for all stages of colon cancer. A doctor may remove the cancer using one of the following types of surgery:Local excision: If the cancer is found at a very early stage, the doctor may

  10. Colon Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - General Information About Colon Cancer

    Colon cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the tissues of the colon.The colon is part of the body's digestive system. The digestive system removes and processes nutrients (vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and water) from foods and helps pass waste material out of the body. The digestive system is made up of the esophagus, stomach, and the small and large intestines. The first 6 feet of the large intestine are called the large bowel or colon. The last 6 inches are the rectum and the anal canal. The anal canal ends at the anus (the opening of the large intestine to the outside of the body).Anatomy of the lower digestive system, showing the colon and other organs.Gastrointestinal stromal tumors can occur in the colon. See the PDQ summary on Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors Treatment for more information. See the PDQ summary about Unusual Cancers of Childhood for information about colorectal cancer in children.Health history can affect the risk of

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