Colon is a approximately 5 Ft long tube like structure which connects small intestine to rectum. Cancer in colon is called colon cancer and that in rectum is called rectal cancer. Since the two of these organs are interconnected hence the cancer in either of two is generally called colo-rectal cancer. The cancer in colon especially can form in ascending colon which is the starting point or transverse colon, which is the middle part or the descending colon which is the lower part or in sigmoid colon which is the end part of colon.
The best part about colo-rectal cancers is that it starts as polyps which are non-cancerous or pre-cancerous in nature. Another good thing is that these polyps are slow growing in nature. So this gives ample time for the cancer specialist or the doctor to diagnose and take neccessary steps to control the growth. Still the main issue is how soon a patient observes the changes and goes to the doctor for consultation.
There can be various reasons that can make you more prone to getting colo rectal cancer. Patients that our cancer specialists have seen in India have following common causes:
More than 50 years of age
Chronic intestinal problems like colitis
Family history of colon cancer
Smoking and alcohol
Diabetes and obesity
Problem with colon or rectal cancer is that is that they do not present with symptoms in early stage. Even the polyps are mostly incedentatl in findings. However, following are the most common symptoms and should not be missed or taken casually:
Change is bowel pattern that may include frequent diarrhea or constipation
Presence of blood in stool
Continuous gastric pain or abdominal discomfort
Unintended weight loss
Unable to empty your bowel completely
Fatigue or lethargy
Fall in haemoglobin levels
The best way to diagnose colorectal cancer is an examination by a gastro or a GI cancer specialist in OPD in India. This could be followed by series of investigations that may include:
Colonoscopy in India is considered as one of the best way to diagnose a cancer in colon or rectum
With development in medical science in India now there is option of virtual colonoscopy through CT Scan which does a 3D reconstruction of colon.
CECT of whole abdomen is also a very good test to diagnose growth in colon or rectum.
No blood test is there that can tell if you have colo rectal cancer. CEA test however may direct towards it.
Treatment of any cancer depends upon the staging. PET CT is the gold standard and one of the best test for staging of cancer in India.
In case the colorectal cancer is localized in colon then the canser surgeon in India can remove it during the colonoscopy. Even a bit bigger polyps can be removed during the colonoscopy procedure.
However, there are cases where the cancer has advanced in that case more extensive surgery may be performed by the colorectal or Gastro cancer surgeon in India. They may include:
Partial Colectomy - In this surgery gastro cancer surgeon in India will remove the affected part of the colon along with wide margin clearance. Post removal the surgeon will connect the colon with rectum.
Colostomy - There might be the scenaria that the colon and rectum cannnot be reconnected. In that case surgeon creates the way for the waste to pass. An opening is created in the wall of stomach and a bag is attached to it for collection of the waste passed. This is called colostomy.
Palliative Surgery with Chemotherapy - When cancer has gone into ver advanced stage and curing it is not possible the the cancer surgeon in India will perform the surgery to remove the blockage from the colon or rectum and give chemotherapy to ease your symptoms rather than curing.
Cost of treatment of colorectal surgery in India varies with the stage of cancer and can range between INR 1,50,000 to INR 5,00,000. India offers cost advantage to patients coming from various part of the world along with technological advancements and some of the best doctor and surgeons.
At LivCure we have developed a programme which gives 360 degree solutions for all the problems of Liver and other Gastrointestinal Diseases.
Liver Transplant Surgery requires highest level of surgical skills and evidence based medical practices. Best Medical minds combined with cutting edge technology makes LivCure - The Premier Centre for Liver Diseases in India.
Dr. Ankur Garg
Liver Transplant & HPB Surgeon
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