Because early detection of colon cancer and rectal cancer directly impacts outcomes,

it is important to gain an understanding of symptoms, types, stages and risk factors of these diseases.


What causes colorectal cancer

The exact cause of colorectal cancer—malignant cells found in the colon or rectum—is unknown.

  • In most colorectal cancer, early tumors start as small polyps that continue to grow and can then turn into malignant tumors.
  • A small percentage of colorectal cancers are caused by inherited gene mutations. People with a family history of colorectal cancer may wish to consider genetic testing.
  • The American Cancer Society suggests that anyone undergoing such tests have access to a physician or geneticist qualified to explain the significance of these test results.

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