Bowel cancer or colorectal cancer is the most common internal cancer that occurs in humans. Typically, bowel cancer occurs in the colon (large intestine) and the rectum (back passage).
Frequently, colorectal cancer develops from polyps that grow inside the lining of the intestine wall. When the polyps become malignant, they turn into cancer. Untreated, bowel cancer can grow through the wall of the intestine and spread to other parts of the body.
If you have any of the following symptoms for three weeks or longer, it could be a sign of colorectal cancer, and you should see your doctor immediately. These symptoms include:
Your back passage bleeds without any apparent reason. The blood can be found in your stool or on your toilet paper following a bowel movement. Along with that, you may also find other symptoms such as lumps, itchiness, straining, and soreness around the rectum. Hemorrhoids can also cause these same symptoms. Make a habit to look into the bowl prior to flushing to watch for these symptoms.
Changes in bowel movement habits
You may experience constant constipation or diarrhea due to the disturbance of muscles. Constipation is usually followed by a feeling of not feeling completely empty even when you already have passed the stool. Meanwhile, diarrhea causes more frequent bowel movements and often with lots of clear, jelly-like mucus.
Pain in the abdominal area
Abdominal pain can be constant or periodic. For some people, it lingers and does not go away. For some others, it comes and goes at unexpected times. When the pain becomes serious, you should contact your physician to get immediate help.
If you bleed often while passing a stool, there is a chance you suffer from anemia. This shows up as unexpected fatigue and breathlessness.
- A lump found in your abdomen or tummy, especially on the right side.
- Unexplained and unexpected weight loss; often along with an unexplained loss of appetite.
How Bowel Cancer symptoms Differ From IBS symptoms?
The symptoms of bowel cancer and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) often get confused by many - often leading one to think that a different disease may be present than actually is. However, the symptoms are clear between the diseases when properly understood by an individual who may be suffering from one or another.
Bowel Cancer (colorectal cancer, or colon cancer) - is basically any form of cancer that affects the colon (large bowel), or rectum (back passage)
Symptoms of bowel cancer may include:
Abdominal pains (gripping, but usually not chronic).
Anal bleeding and pain - loose stool (often containing blood [sometimes constipation - feeling the need to strain when not necessary]).
A right-hand-sided lump in the back-passage or abdomen.
The sensation of being bloated.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) - is a digestive disorder that a large part of the population suffers from however, because of it being such a delicate (embarrassing) illness - is little spoken of. Although, IBS offers similar symptoms to bowel cancer.
Symptoms of IBS may include:
Chronic abdominal pains.
Major disturbances within the functioning process of the bowel (diarrhea at a moments notice [up to 3-time a day] and often preceded by constipation), chronic constipation 3-times a week [sometimes alternating between the two], and mucus in the stool).
Anxiety or depression.
Heart fluttering (palpitations - sensations of heart beat-skips).
Insomnia (problems getting to sleep).
Sexual problems (pains during sex or reduced sexual desire).
Unpleasant tastes in the mouth.
Urinary problems (a frequent or urgent need to urinate, trouble starting to urinate, or trouble emptying the bladder).