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Colorectal Cancer, Diagnosis and Treatment Plan Essay


Abstract

Cancer remains one of the major health challenges affecting the global community today. Researchers and scientists have observed that new cancer types have been recorded within the past four decades. One of these malignancies affecting humankind is colorectal cancer. This paper gives a detailed analysis of colorectal cancer. The essay outlines the disease’s etiology, causes, diagnosis, prognosis, risk factors, treatment methods, and prevalence. The presented information can help healthcare workers design appropriate health delivery models capable of supporting the needs of more people in the world.

Name of the Cancer and Etiology

The name of targeted cancer for this assignment is colorectal cancer. This type of cancer usually starts in the rectum or colon (Sancho, 2007). These body parts constitute the lower part of the human digestive system. The role of the colon is to absorb nutrients and water from the stool before it is excreted from the body. The etiology of this cancer is complex because it is associated with various risk factors. For instance, a person’s age is a key risk factor for the condition. Genetic predisposition can be used to explain the development of this condition. People whose ancestors had Crohn’s disease or colorectal cancer have increased the chances of developing the condition (Freeman, 2013). People who consume fatty foods and smokers expose themselves to this disease.

Altering Normal Body Functions

Colorectal cancer is known to affect the human digestive system. Cancer begins with growths or polyps that can eventually grow to become cancerous tumors (Cutsem, Nordlinger, & Cervantes, 2010). These cancerous cells grow slowly and eventually destroy the surrounding body tissues. This condition affects the normal functions of different body systems. For instance, cancer results in the ineffective digestion of food materials in the body. The bowel “becomes ineffective thus failing to empty completely” (Cutsem et al., 2010, p. 94).

This disease has been observed to weaken the body’s immunity. The weakened immune system will be unable to fight illnesses such as flu and the common cold. These diseases will eventually affect the health outcomes of the affected person. The human body relies on specific hormones in order to function optimally (Sancho, 2007). Colorectal cancer can affect the levels of different hormones thus altering the effectiveness of the hormone system. When different body functions are altered, the patient finds it hard to perform his or her daily activities. Consequently, the individual’s lifestyle changes completely.

Diagnosis, Treatment Plan, and Prognosis

The best approach towards dealing with colorectal cancer is early detection. Routine tests should be conducted in order to detect this cancer. Blood in the stools should be monitored in order to detect the condition. Biomarkers have been proposed by health professionals to diagnose this disease. Colonoscopy and biopsy have become effective approaches for diagnosing various cancers. The technique monitors the development of different abnormalities.

Stool DNA tests have been used before to diagnose various conditions such as colorectal cancer. Many doctors encourage their clients to monitor their bowels (Cutsem et al., 2010). Frequent screening practices can help patients detect the disease before it develops. Some experts argue that the analysis of genetic variants can single out individuals who have increased chances of developing the condition. This understanding can be used to support the needs of individuals who have higher chances of developing the condition.

Powerful treatment plans should be used to support the needs of individuals who have been diagnosed with colorectal cancer. The first approach is the use of drugs. Several drugs can be combined in order to treat the disease or reduce its effects. Some of the common drugs include Avastin, Capecitabine, Leucovorin Calcium, Oxaliplatin, and Vectibix (Kahi et al., 2016). Some drug combinations such as FOLFIRI, FU-LV, CAPOX, and XELIRI can be used to treat this condition.

Surgery is the second technique used to treat this cancer. During its initial stages, doctors can use surgical procedures to remove polyps or tumors. This surgical procedure should be done when performing a colonoscopy (Bazensky & Yoder, 2014). Mucosal resection can be done to remove large tumors or polyps. Cancers that have grown through the rectum or colon should be treated using partial colectomy. This procedure is used to remove certain parts of the affected colon. Doctors can use surgical methods to remove lymph nodes. Chemotherapy is embraced when cancer has spread to different tissues or organs (Kahi et al., 2016). Radiations such as X-rays can be used to destroy cancerous cells in the body. Radiation therapy has the potential to minimize pain.

Colorectal cancer is one of the complex conditions affecting many people. Analysts have argued strongly that it is very hard to make an accurate prognosis of colorectal cancer (Kahi et al., 2016). A study by Bazensky and Yoder (2014) indicated that “90 percent of individuals who were diagnosed with the condition could live up to five years” (p. 2). However, some of the studies focusing on cancer have failed to monitor the survival rates associated with it. That being the case, experts have been supporting the use of therapies and early detection in order to deal with this condition. Individuals should have their digestive systems screened frequently to detect the disease (Bazensky & Yoder, 2014). This practice will increase the survival rate associated with this condition.

Predisposition: Ethnicity, Gender, and Age

Past studies have identified a number of issues associated with colorectal cancer. To begin with, individuals above the age of fifty have higher chances of developing this disease. This fact explains why healthcare practitioners and nurses encourage people above 50 years of age to be screened frequently. This practice should apply to both females and males in order to deal with the condition successfully. Freeman (2013) goes further to argue that men have higher chances of developing colorectal cancer. Although both genders have high chances of getting this disease, medical experts encourage men to undertake stringent measures in order to achieve their health goals.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the African American community is more widely affected by colorectal cancer than any other racial group. African American men are also widely affected by this condition. The condition has also been prevalent in different races such as whites, Latinos, and Native Americans (Colorectal cancer rates by race and ethnicity, 2016). African American women are more widely affected by the condition than the other groups. However, these findings are not exhaustive thus encouraging future researchers to analyze the prevalence of the condition in different ethnic groups. This knowledge will make it easier for different organizations and agencies to develop powerful models that can deal with the condition.

Risk Factors

Increased cases of colorectal cancer have been observed in specific groups and communities. This fact shows clearly that there are some risk factors for the condition. Individuals who eat unhealthy foods and fats have increased chances of developing this condition (Bazensky & Yoder, 2014). People should ensure their diets are balanced in order to deal with this problem. Men who take alcohol increase their chances of developing colorectal cancer.

This fact should encourage more people to avoid or consume less alcohol. Smoking is associated with different terminal conditions such as colorectal cancer (Colorectal cancer rates by race and ethnicity, 2016). Medical experts encourage smokers to avoid tobacco-based products. By so doing, more smokers will minimize their chances of getting different chronic diseases.

Genetic factors have been associated with different cancers. Individuals whose parents, relatives, and ancestors had the disease tend to have higher chances of developing rectal or colon cancer (Colorectal cancer rates by race and ethnicity, 2016). Studies have indicated obesity and overweight increase the risk of malignancies such as colorectal cancer. Experts and nutritionists encourage obese people to engage in physical activities in order to have healthy lifestyles. People who lead sedentary lifestyles should engage in physical associated. This is the case because the lack of exercise is one of the risk factors for this cancer (Freeman, 2013).

Men have been widely associated with this condition. This fact explains why males should undertake extra measures in an attempt to deal with colorectal cancer. They can achieve this goal by engaging in sporting activities, jogging, and gymnastics (Cutsem et al., 2010). By so doing, more people in the community will lead quality lives and eventually realize their personal objectives.

References

Bazensky, I., & Yoder, L. (2014). Colorectal cancer: an overview of the epidemiology, risk factors, symptoms, and screening guidelines. CNE Series, 1(1), 1-7.

Colorectal cancer rates by race and ethnicity. (2016). Web.

Cutsem, E., Nordlinger, B., & Cervantes, A. (2010). Advanced colorectal cancer: ESMO clinical practice guidelines for treatment. Annals of Oncology, 21(5), 93-97.

Freeman, H. (2013). Natural history and long-term outcomes of patients treated for early stage colorectal cancer. Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology, 27(1), 409-413.

Kahi, C., Boland, C., Dominitz, J., Giardiello, F., Johnson, D., Kaltenbach, T.,…Rex, D. (2016). Colonoscopy surveillance after colorectal cancer resection: recommendations of the US multi-society task force on colorectal cancer. Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, 83(3), 489-498.

Sancho, E. (2007). Molecular mechanisms involved in colorectal cancer initiation and progression. Scientific Report, 1(1), 118-121.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Colorectal Cancer, Diagnosis and Treatment Plan." August 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/colorectal-cancer-diagnosis-and-treatment-plan/.

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