Colon cancer also known as colorectal cancer is one of the most frequently occur cancer recorded. Colorectal cancer is often detected at an early stage and at this stage, treatment can cure this disease.
Who is at risk of intestinal cancer?
Colon cancer is the second most common cancer in men and the third among women in Malaysia. Colon cancer can occur at any age, but the risk is higher if you are aged 50 years and above.
The risk of getting colon cancer higher if you:
- Have a family history of colon cancer; and
- ever had inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or Crohn's colitis) for more than 8 years.
Not all colon cancers show early signs or symptoms but you should consult your doctor if you experience the following:
- Bleeding from the rectum or blood after a bowel movement;
- significant changes in bowel habits: for example, more frequent bowel movements or liquid stools, frequent constipation or feeling more frequent bowel movements than usual;
- feel unsatisfied after defecation;
- stomach pain;
- weight loss without apparent reason; and
- Tired, weak or short of breath for no reason. These symptoms may be caused by anemia due to iron deficiency. This type of anemia can be caused by colon cancer.
Reducing the Risk of Colorectal Cancer
- Eat nutritious foods, including taking more vegetables and fruits and reduce the consumption of animal fat;
- maintaining a healthy weight;
- exercise regularly;
- do not smoke; and
- do not drink alcohol.