- Polyps may become malignant over time and when there is a genetic predisposition.
- Colon cancer is one of the few variants where its appearance has been understood.
- Some habits can help reduce the development of colon cancer.
Early detection of polyps decreases the development of colon cancer, says Dr. Esteban de Icaza del Río, gastroenterologist and endoscopy specialist at ABC Medical Center.
Within cancers, colon cancer is the third most frequent in men and second in women. Fortunately, it is possible to detect and treat it.
“Overall, the lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer is approximately 1 in 23 (4.3%) for men and 1 in 25 (4.0%) for women. The risk is slightly lower in women than in men.”1
Colon cancer is one of the few variants where its appearance has been understood. Although this disease is often asymptomatic, it is known that its precursor lesions are polyps, small lesions inside the colon that a significant percentage of the population will develop as they age.
Polyps, says Dr. de Icaza, grow over time and they could become malignant in case of having a family history or genetic predisposition, a situation in which intervention will be sought beforehand. The general population begins to present these lesions after age 45, so it is recommended to have a colonoscopy.
There are different factors to consider for the development of colon cancer, age and family inheritance are the most related, having a first-degree relative who has developed it is an important factor for recurrent studies.
Also, a sedentary lifestyle, tobacco use, a high-fat Western diet and even suffering from other colon diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease, are a risk for developing this disease.
Other sources of alarm are changes in bowel habits, this includes diarrhea without cause, periods of constipation, atypical abdominal pain, or pain that does not decrease after bowel movements and is different from temporary intestinal cramps.
On the other hand, some habits help reduce the development of colon cancer, such as a diet rich in fiber that can come from vegetables, cereals, or fruits; proper hydration by consuming at least two liters of water per day, and aerobic exercise four or five days a week.
At the ABC Medical Center’s Cancer Center we can provide you with specialized care. Contact us!
Dr. Esteban de Icaza del Río gastroenterologist and endoscopy specialist at ABC Medical Center.