Colon cancer starts when noncancerous polyps, or abnormal cell clusters, form in the mucus-making glands of the colon. These polyps can also grow in the lower part of the colon, which leads to colorectal cancer. Both colon cancer and colorectal cancer are slow forming and develop over the course of 10 to 15 years.
At Dignity Health Southern California hospitals, our personalized services include screenings to detect cancer in its early stages, before it gets a chance to advance. Find a Doctor today to receive quality care for colorectal cancer in Southern California at one of our hospitals:
Causes & Prevention of Colon Cancer
Colon cancer, also called bowel cancer, affects men and women equally. Some people, such as those with Type 2 diabetes or a family history of colon cancer, have a higher risk of developing the disease. Poor lifestyle choices also contribute to the growth of colon polyps. A balanced diet, regular moderate to vigorous exercise, and limited alcohol and tobacco use helps lower the risk of developing colorectal cancers.
When to See a Doctor About Colon Cancer
Because tumors in the colon develop at a very slow rate, symptoms of colon cancer often go unnoticed. Some of the known symptoms include:
- Bloody stool
- Changes in bowel habits, such as changes in consistency or narrowing of the stool
- Feeling of incomplete emptying after a bowel movement
- Abdominal cramping or pain
- Rectal bleeding
- Tiredness or weakness
- Weight loss
- Loss of appetite
The symptoms above are also present for other conditions, such as hemorrhoids. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with a specialist at a Dignity Health Southern California hospital who can provide an accurate diagnosis and begin a treatment plan.
Treating Colon Cancer at Dignity Health Southern California
Treatment for colon cancer is effective, and more than one million Americans are survivors of the disease. At Dignity Health Southern California hospitals, with locations in Long Beach, Northridge, Downtown LA, Glendale, and San Bernardino, we provide a range of services, including chemotherapy, to cure patients of colon polyps and colon cancer.
The type of treatment our specialists choose largely depends on the stage of the cancer. While surgery is the most common treatment option, performed at our Colorectal Surgery Institute at Glendale Memorial Hospital, we offer other treatment plans to get rid of cancer in its various stages. Your doctor will explain the benefits and risks of each treatment, and partner with you as you treat colon cancer.
Dignity Health provides comprehensive colon cancer care in Southern California.