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Colon or Colorectal cancer

Treatment and Research of colorectal cancer

Source: breastcancer.org - a non-profit organisation, USA

June 26, 2004

Planning Treatment
If tests show that you have cancer, you should talk with your doctor and make treatment decisions as soon as possible. Studies show that early treatment leads to better outcomes.

A team of specialists often treats people with cancer. The team will keep the primary doctor informed about the patient's progress. The team may include a medical oncologist who is a specialist in cancer treatment, a surgeon, a radiation oncologist who is a specialist in radiation therapy, and others.

Before starting treatment, you may want another doctor to review the diagnosis and treatment plan. Some insurance companies require a second opinion. Others may pay for a second opinion if you request it.

Some colorectal cancer patients take part in studies of new treatments. These studies, called clinical trials, are designed to find out whether a new treatment is safe and effective.

Often, clinical trials compare a new treatment with a standard one so that doctors can learn which is more effective. People with colorectal cancer who are interested in taking part in a clinical trial should talk with their doctor.

Staging Treatment
If the diagnosis is cancer, the doctor needs to learn the stage -- or extent -- of the disease. Staging is a careful attempt to find out whether the cancer has spread and, if so, to what parts of the body. More tests may be performed to help determine the stage. Knowing the stage of the disease helps the doctor plan treatment.

Here are the stages of colorectal cancer:

  • Stage 0 -- The cancer is very early and is found only in the innermost lining of the colon or rectum;
  • Stage I -- The cancer involves more of the inner wall of the colon or rectum;
  • Stage II -- The cancer has spread outside the colon or rectum to nearby tissue, but not to the lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are small, bean-shaped structures that are part of the body's immune system;
  • Stage III -- The cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes, but not to other parts of the body;
  • Stage IV -- The cancer has spread to other parts of the body. Colorectal cancer tends to spread to the liver and/or lungs;
  • Recurrent -- Recurrent cancer means the cancer has come back after treatment. The disease may recur in the colon or rectum or in another part of the body.

Most patients with stage 0, I, II, or III cancers can undergo treatment with the hope of a cure. Colorectal cancer rarely occurs again after 5 years, so most patients who live 5 years are considered cured. Most stage IV cancers cannot be cured, although treatment may be available to help extend life.

Standard Treatments
Treatments are available for all patients who have colon cancer. The choice of treatment depends on the size, location, and stage of the cancer and on the patient's general health. Doctors may suggest several treatments or combinations of treatments.

The three standard treatments for colon cancer are surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Surgery, however, is the most common treatment for all stages of colon cancer. Surgery is an operation to remove the cancer. A doctor may remove the cancer using several types of surgery.

If the cancer is found at a very early stage, the doctor may remove it without cutting through the abdominal wall. Instead, the doctor may put a tube up the rectum into the colon and cut the cancer out. This is called a local excision. If the cancer is found in a polyp, which is a small bulging piece of tissue, the operation is called a polypectomy.

If the cancer is larger, the surgeon will remove the cancer and a small amount of healthy tissue around it. This is called a colectomy. The surgeon may then sew the healthy parts of the colon together. Usually, the surgeon will also remove lymph nodes near the colon and examine them under a microscope to see whether they contain cancer.

Some patients need a temporary colostomy to allow the lower colon or rectum to heal after surgery. After a colostomy, the patient wears a special bag to collect body waste.

Sometimes the colostomy is needed only until the lower colon has healed, and then it can be reversed. But if the doctor needs to remove the entire lower colon or rectum, the colostomy may be permanent.

Some colorectal cancer patients require a permanent colostomy. After a colostomy, the patient wears a special bag to collect body waste.

Next page - Research on Colon Cancer

See below for a sample of Fortified Flax Hulls (1st pic) and Flax Hulls (2nd pic)

Each jar contains 180gm of fortified flax hulls or 150gm of flax hulls

The above information is provided for general educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace competent health care advice received from a knowledgeable healthcare professional. You are urged to seek healthcare advice for the treatment of any illness or disease.
Health Canada and the FDA (USA) have not evaluated these statements. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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