Colon cancer

The signs of colon cancer are often very discreet, and preventive medical check-ups can help identify the disease at an early stage

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Cancer can occur in various parts of the intestine. Sometimes it develops from initially benign growths of the intestinal mucosa, the so-called intestinal polyps. But not every colon polyp degenerates. However, certain varieties have an increased risk, which is why polyps are removed during a colonoscopy if possible.

Small bowel cancer is relatively rare, whereas colon cancer in the large intestine (colon cancer) or in the rectum is much more common.

The signs of colon cancer are often very inconspicuous. Symptoms of the disease can include, for example:

  • Blood in the stool
  • a change in bowel habits, an inexplicable alternation of diarrhea and constipation
  • the so-called pencil chair, which is only the diameter of a pencil
  • increased flatulence
  • Abdominal pain, painful bowel movements
  • slight fever, night sweats, tiredness

Check-ups can help detect colon cancer as early as possible:

  • Immunological test for blood in the stool: Between the ages of 50 and 54, statutory insured persons can have an annual immunological test for blood in the stool. As long as they have not had a colonoscopy, women and men aged 55 and over can have an immunological test for blood in their stool every two years.
  • Colonoscopy: Men who are legally insured are entitled to two colonoscopies at least ten years apart from the age of 50. This entitlement applies to women aged 55 and over. If the first colonoscopy does not take place until after the 65th birthday, this remains with this one colonoscopy.

You can read detailed information about the treatment of the various types of colon cancer, about prevention and early detection in the respective articles.

Symptoms that can occur in colon cancer

  • Blood in the anus / intestines: what the symptom means
  • Diarrhea: causes, diagnosis, therapy
  • Constipation (constipation)