Colon Cancer Symptoms

Let’s take a look at some common symptoms linked to colon cancer. Do any of these symptoms look familiar? If you experience any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor or gastroenterologist.

  • A change in bowel habits, such as more frequent diarrhea or constipation
  • Rectal bleeding or blood in the stool
  • Ongoing discomfort in the belly area, such as cramps, gas or pain
  • Anemia
  • A feeling that the bowel doesn’t empty all the way during a bowel movement
  • Weakness or tiredness
  • Losing weight without trying
    [Source: ASGE : National Library of Medicine]

Delayed Onset of Symptoms
Sometime colon cancer symptoms can go unnoticed. This may happen during the earlier stages. Keep in mind, some people with colon cancer may not experience symptoms. This is why it’s important to start screenings at the age of 45. Family history of colon cancer may indicate the need for earlier screenings.


Causes of Colon Cancer


Here’s some useful information to know about colon polyps and cancer risk. Colon polyps are known to contribute to colon cancer. Early detection of polyps is your best defense in the fight against colorectal cancer.

What causes colon cancer?

  • Almost all colon cancers develop from colon polyps. However, most polyps do not develop into cancer.
  • Certain polyps can develop into cancer. By removing these, colon cancer can be prevented. Polyps do not regrow, but new ones can arise over time. Individuals that are found to have precancerous polyps are at increased risk of developing more of these polyps in the future. Therefore, it is recommended that they have colonoscopies more frequently to remove any of these polyps and thereby prevent colon cancer.


What are colon polyps?

  • Colon polyps are a group of cells on the lining of the colon.
  • There are two types of polyps: precancerous (neoplastic) and non-precancerous (non-neoplastic). Precancerous have the potential to grow into cancer while non-precancerous typically do not.
  • Polyps can be flat, slightly raised (sessile) or mushroom like with a stalk (pedunculated).
  • Polyps can be removed during a colonoscopy or flexible sigmoidoscopy (polypectomy). They are then given to a pathologist who can look at them under a microscope to determine what type they are.