Colorectal cancer third leading killer

Kathmandu, April 2:  Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women throughout the world.

According to the doctors, overall the lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer is about one in 22 (4.49%) for men and one in 24 ( 4.15%) for women.

Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in men and in women, and the second most common cause of cancer deaths when men and women are combined.

Every year 1.8 million (18 lakh) new cases of colorectal cancer is recorded worldwide. Of them, almost 50 per cent, nine million people die of the disease.

Lately, the number of colorectal cancer patients has gone up widely, said Colorectal and General Surgeon Dr. Satyadeep Bhattacharya of Norvic Hospital.

According to Dr. Bhattacharya, the colorectal cancer (colon and rectum cancer) could be prevented through the awareness and regular screening test which is the best way to protect person from the disease.

Addressing the programme organised by the Norvic here at the capital, Dr. Bhattacharya said maintaining healthy weight, regular physical exercise and healthy food could prevent colorectal cancer.

Shedding light on the importance of colonoscopy, Gastroenterologist Dr. Barun Shah of Norvic said colonoscopy represents a very important diagnostic modality for screening for colorectal cancer because it has the ability to both detect and effectively remove pro-malignant and malignant lesions.

According to Dr. Shah to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, getting screening for colorectal cancer should start at the age of 45 for the people at average risk.

Screenings are tests that look for cancer before signs and symptoms develop and these tests also can find colon and rectal cancer earlier, when treatments are more likely to be successful up to 80-90 per cent, he added.

He also suggested eating balanced diet with lots of vegetable, fruits and whole grains which are linked to a decreased risk of colon or rectal cancer, getting regular exercise 20-30 minutes exercise for four times a week, quit smoking and alcohol and maintain weight could reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.

According to him, colon polyp, a small clump of cell that forms on the lining of the colon can develop into colon cancer, which is often fatal when found in the later stages. “Early diagnosis makes it easy to treat colorectal cancer. Most patients with colon cancer are surgically treated, with postoperative association of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.”

If the treatment would be done by the specialized surgeons and doctors, then the postoperative complications could be mitigated, said Dr. Bhattacharya.

The risk of colorectal cancer increases as people get older. It can occur in young adults and teenager, but the majority of colorectal cancer occur in people older than 50, he added. 

Similarly, men have a slightly higher risk of developing colorectal cancer than women, those with family history of colorectal cancer, said doctors.


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