How Colon Cancer is Diagnosed
For some, a colon cancer diagnosis comes after months of trying to pinpoint the cause of various symptoms. Others receive a surprise diagnosis after a routine colonoscopy. Although there are many ways to arrive at a colon cancer diagnosis, they all have one thing in common: laboratory analysis of a tissue sample that confirms the presence of cancer.
It's best to get regular screenings rather than rely on colon cancer symptoms to alert you to the presence of a tumor. This is because colon cancer can grow for years before causing any symptoms. But, knowing what to look out for can't hurt.
There are five common colon cancer tests: colonoscopy, virtual colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, barium enema, and fecal occult blood test. Each has benefits and drawbacks, so it's best to ask your doctor which colon cancer test is appropriate for you. In the meantime, however, here's an overview of the most common types of colon cancer tests.
A colon biopsy is the removal and examination of tissue, cells, or fluid from the colon. No colon cancer diagnosis is final until the tissue sample from your colon is analyzed in a laboratory and found to contain cancer cells.
The next best thing to colon cancer prevention is early diagnosis. The average survival rate for someone who receives a stage 1 colon cancer diagnosis is much greater than for someone who receives a stage 4 diagnosis. We're accustomed to human error on the part of patients, but it's important to remember that doctors are human, too. These tips will help you avoid a delayed colon cancer diagnosis.
Colon cancer is a cancer of the large intestine that usually affects people over the age of 50. Recognize the symptoms of colon cancer, and get information on cancer detection.