Earlier Colon Cancer Screening?

May 15, 2008 — On your 50th birthday, you’ll get a present from your doctor — a referral to colon cancer screening, preferably by colonoscopy. But a new study suggests this gift might do more good if it arrives years earlier. Most people don’t get colon cancer before they’re 60. Although colon cancer is deadly, it takes about a decade for colon polyps to turn into cancer (if they do — most polyps never become cancers). Removal of polyps prevents colon cancer, so doctors start looking for polyps when a person turns 50. Should doctors start looking earlier? A new study shows that people in their 40s are just as likely to have colon polyps as are people in their 50s. Study leader Alfred I. Neugut, MD, PhD, is acting chief of oncology at Columbia University Medical Center. “Should we start screening people in their 40s? Maybe,” Neugut tells WebMD. “It does take 10 years for a polyp to turn into cancer. So if people had screening in their 40s, maybe you would not see cancers in people in their 50s.” Neugut is quick to point out that this small study is by no means definitive. For one thing, there were too few patients. And the study did not evaluate whether the patients had family histories of colon cancer — a risk factor for colon cancer that should trigger screening before age 50. (Have you been screened for colon cancer ?

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Colon Cancer Alliance Announces Eric Hargis as CEO

Hargis brings more than 30 years of relevant leadership experience in national health organizations to his new role. “Our Board of Directors and executive staff selected Eric after a nationwide search. As a seasoned executive, his strong leadership abilities, history in strategically growing health organizations and passion for our mission make him the right candidate to take our organization to the next level and move our mission forward,” says Jasmine Greenamyer, Colon Cancer Alliance COO. Hargis joins the Colon Cancer Alliance after serving as the Executive Director for the National Parent Teacher Association. Prior to the National PTA, Hargis served as CEO of the Epilepsy Foundation of America, COO of the Arthritis Foundation and Director of Development for the American Diabetes Association. Hargis has a proven track record of being a transformational leader, specifically leading nonprofit organizations through strategic growth plans. Nationally, Hargis has successfully led the development of numerous programs, partnerships, events and fundraising initiatives. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to be a part of the Colon Cancer Alliance, an organization that is directly saving lives,” says Hargis. “The foundation has already been laid: more people than ever before know they need to get screened, but yet, colon cancer is still the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States and it shouldn’t be. Through early detection and lifesaving screening, we can fulfill our mission to knock colon cancer out of the top three cancer killers. I’m committed to this organization and know that with the support of our Board of Directors, staff, sponsors and volunteers, we can save more lives than ever before.” Hargis graduated with a degree from the University of San Diego.

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Pet/ct And Biomarkers Predict Treatment Response In Metastatic Colon Cancer

Despite a growing number of therapeutic regimens for the disease, the 5-year survival remains low at less than 10%. Given the variety of treatment options, improving clinicians ability to predict patients responses to various treatments would allow them to alter the therapeutic course for patients with unresponsive tumors. This new study suggests an approach that overcomes some of the limitations of the current gold standards for disease assessment, which are either limited to treatments that ultimately affect tumor size or those that cannot be applied, in many cases, until three months have elapsed after treatment. A total of 26 mCC patients from a single hospital completed the study, which involved pretreatment PET/CT and treatment with repeating cycles of capecitabine/oxaliplatin (CAPOX) and bevacizumab. Early and late PET/CT evaluations were performed, as well as peripheral blood collection at 20 days after the first treatment cycle and 20 days after the fourth cycle. In addition to functional imaging using FDG PET/CT, the group assessed the levels of the glycoprotein carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1), liberated domain 1 of urokinase plasminogen activator receptor [uPAR(I)] and the mutation status of KRAS and BRAF oncogenes, all of which are known predictors of treatment response and/or prognosis. When patients were divided into responders and nonresponders, the early metabolic response category assessed by PET could predict the late morphological response category determined by CT in 73% of cases, with 80% sensitivity and 69% specificity. Early determination of metabolic nonresponse was significantly predictive of disease progression, with nonresponders having a greater than 3 times higher risk of progression compared to responders. A nonsignificant reduction in overall survival was also observed among metabolic nonresponders compared with responders, according to early PET evaluation. A 10-mm diameter increase in the largest lesion observed at pretreatment PET/CT was significantly predictive of poorer survival, as was the number of metastatic sites observed. High levels of TIMP-1 at both pretreatment and early post-treatment evaluations were significantly associated with an increased risk of death. Additionally, treatment significantly decreased TIMP-1 levels at the early evaluation. While CEA levels were characteristically high in almost all the mCC cases, there was no association between their levels and patient survival, although CEA did decrease following treatment in a borderline statistically significant manner. Finally, high uPAR(I) levels at both pretreatment and early evaluation were predictive of poorer survival, and the levels of this biomarker also decreased after treatment.

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Laparoscopic Surgery For Colon Cancer May Benefit Seniors

Newer Colon Cancer Surgery Shows Benefits

“These advantages can be particularly important to the elderly.” In the new study, a Canadian team of researchers reviewed data on more than 9,400 patients over the age of 70 who had colon cancer surgery in the United States between 2009 and 2010. Of those patients, more than 5,700 had open surgeries, while about 3,700 had less-invasive laparoscopic procedures. Patients who had open surgery were much more likely than those who had laparoscopic surgery to be sent to a nursing home after leaving the hospital, the team found, at 20 percent versus 12.5 percent, respectively. The study is scheduled for presentation Tuesday at the annual Clinical Congress of the American College of Surgeons in Washington, D.C. Findings presented at medical meetings are typically considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal. “There is evidence that laparoscopic surgical treatment for colon cancer is similar to an open operation in terms of outcomes from a cancer treatment point of view,” study author Dr. Richard Liu, a general surgery resident at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, said in a college news release. According to the U.S. National Cancer Institute, three-year survival and cancer recurrence rates are comparable for patients who have laparoscopic or open surgery for any stage of colon cancer. Age also affected the risk of ending up in a nursing home after colon cancer surgery. The lowest risk was for those aged 70 to 75, while the risk was four times higher among those aged 80 to 85 and eight times higher among those over 85, the researchers said. Liu’s team also found that patients who had other diseases — such as diabetes, high blood pressure or heart disease — were more likely to require nursing home care after leaving the hospital. For colon cancer patients in their early 70s who do not have advanced cancer or other major health problems, laparoscopic surgery may help prolong their lives and also preserve their quality of life, the researchers concluded. Wishner agreed.

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Laparoscopic Surgery for Colon Cancer May Benefit Seniors

Those who had laparoscopic surgery stayed in the hospital for five days, three days less than patients who had the standard operation. But other surgeons noted that patients undergoing the standard operation in American hospitals now tended to stay about six days. Of 111 patients who underwent laparoscopic colon surgery, 12 developed complications, compared with 31 in the group of 108 who had the standard operation. ”If these results were confirmed by ongoing multicenter randomized trials, laparoscopy would become the standard surgical approach to patients with colon cancer,” Dr. Lacy said. A number of studies involving thousands of patients in this country and elsewhere are in progress. Dr. Alfred M. Cohen, a colon cancer specialist who also directs the Lucille P. Markey Cancer Center at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, said in an interview that the Spanish study was ”well done.” Many doctors who do the procedure are enthusiastic about it. ”This study will generate a flurry of activity because even the evangelical groups in this country now are downplaying the benefits of laparoscopic colon surgery,” Dr.

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Where Are Colon Polyps Usually Found?

Tweet Q: My 65-year-old husband just had a colonoscopy, and his doctor said it was incomplete because his colon was very long. She removed two small polyps that were precancerous. Now she wants to do a barium enema. Where in the intestine are most polyps found? Casey, Idaho A: Polyps can occur at any location in the large colon. The distribution of polyps tends to vary, however, based on polyp size and the age of individual. For example about half of all polyps are found in the lower portion of the colon, or the rectosigmoid region. Older patients tend to have more polyps in the right side of colon than the left, and typically, larger polyps are founds in the right colon. Despite this, the entire length of the colon needs to be evaluated for presence of polyps. For more information about colon cancer, visit the Everyday Health Colon Cancer Center . Find out what a colonoscopy and other colorectal cancer screening tests are like. Last Updated: 07/27/2009 Colon cancer expert Dr. Saeed Sadeghi is a staff physician and an assistant clinical professor of medicine in the division of hematology and oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles.

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Colon Polyps

More Info Colon polyps are growths of tissue inside the large intestine, also called the colon. Some polyps are mushroom-shaped protrusions on the end of a stalk. Others appear as bumps that lie flat against the intestinal wall. There are several types of polyps. Most are noncancerous (benign), but one type, the adenomatous polyp, is associated with changes (called mutations) in the DNA of the lining of the colon. These mutations can progress into colon cancer. The larger the polyp, the greater the chance that it contains cancerous cells. For a polyp larger than 1 inch in diameter, there is a 10% chance it is cancerous. Some people are born with a genetic tendency to develop multiple polyps. Inherited conditions such as familial adenomatous polyposis and Gardner’s syndrome can cause hundreds of polyps to grow in the colon and rectum. Without surgery to remove the affected section of the intestine, it is almost certain that at least one of these polyps will turn into cancer by middle age. These two conditions are rare. Symptoms Many times, people are not aware they have colon polyps because there are no symptoms. Larger growths can bleed, causing blood in the stool.

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Diet to Prevent Colon Polyps

Some polyps are benign, but certain types can turn into cancer. Anyone can develop colon polyps but certain groups are more likely to develop them than others. Adults 50 years or older and those who’ve had polyps before are at an increased risk. Your risk also increases if you eat a lot of high-fat foods, smoke, drink alcohol, are overweight or lead a sedentary lifestyle, according to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. You Might Also Like Stages of Colon Fiber Fiber is the indigestible portion of plants, and although your body doesn’t absorb fiber, it does play an important role in digestive wellness and helps maintain bowel health. You get two kinds of fiber from your diet, soluble and insoluble. Most plants contain a mixture of both fibers, with some being higher in one type compared to the other. Soluble Fiber absorbs water from your intestines and forms a gel. It plays a role in promoting healthy cholesterol levels. Insoluble fiber does not dissolve it water, it adds bulk to stools and is most commonly linked to bowel health. High-Fiber Foods It’s recommended that you aim to get at least 20 to 30 grams of total fiber daily to help prevent colon polyps. There is no specific recommendation for insoluble fiber since plants contain both types of fiber. Foods particularly high in insoluble fiber include kale, green beans, okra, peas, sweet potato, turnip, carrots, apples, apricots, kiwi, oranges, mango and variety of beans and legumes.

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Colon Cancer And Polyps: What You Need To Know

Cancer Cells

Colon cancer risk factors The lifetime risk for developing colon cancer is 1-in-18 and over 90% of these cases occur after the age 50. Increasing age, a family history of colon polyps, colon cancer or other early cancers can double or triple your risk for developing this disease. If any of these risk factors run in your family, you need to start the discussion about screening at age 40 or even earlier depending on when your family members were diagnosed. Persons with ulcerative colitis , Crohns disease or a personal history of cancer are also at increased risk for colon cancer and need to tailor regular, more frequent colonoscopies. Studies also indicate that diet and smoking may increase the risk of developing colon polyps and colon cancer. While family history and other risk factors matter, not having risk factors does not eliminate your need for screenings. What polyps tell us As we age, about 1-in-4 of us develop polyps in our colon and about 10% of these polyps eventually turn from a benign growth into colon cancer. For the most part, these polyps take about 10 years to transform into colon cancer. Polyps and early colon cancers often have no symptoms and can be detected only by screening exams. How can colon cancer best be prevented? There are several effective ways to reduce your colon cancer risk, but none more important than getting timely screenings and removing polyps before they become malignant.

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Reduce risk from cancer-causing polyps

EXCLUSIVE: Marcheline Bertrand, French actress and mother of Angelina Jolie, has died of cancer

Health experts recommend that you begin having colorectal screening tests at age 50, or sooner if you or a family member has a history of polyps or colon cancer. Your physician can create a screening schedule appropriate for you, based on your individual level of risk. Of course, instead of detecting and removing polyps, it would be better to prevent them altogether. Research suggests that smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, a sedentary lifestyle and overweight all increase polyp formation. Advertise Change your diet, lower your risk Many studies have been done to see how a persons eating habits might promote or block the formation of polyps, but specific answers are still lacking. A fiber-rich diet with plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans is commonly associated with a lower risk of colon cancer. Yet in one recent large population study, fiber consumption was unconnected to colon cancer occurrence. No randomized clinical trial the most convincing type of human study has shown that increasing peoples dietary fiber decreases the first appearance or recurrence of polyps either. The problem with the randomized clinical trials so far may be their short duration. None has been more than four years long. It is probable that diets affect on colon cancer takes place over a longer period of time. Despite the lack of supporting evidence from randomized clinical trials, you should still eat the lowfat, mostly plant-based diet researchers recommend to lower colon cancer risk. This eating style might inhibit colon cancer in several ways, such as decreasing polyp formation, slowing the growth of polyps, or blocking their transition from benign to cancerous. Other steps you could take to decrease the formation of colon polyps include limiting your red meat consumption and meeting the current recommendations for folate.

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Colon Polyp Return Likelier in Men

Laiyemo tells WebMD that doctors already knew that people who have three or more polyps removed are at significantly increased risk of developing new polyps. In fact, current guidelines, developed by the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer and the American Cancer Society, recommend that people with three or more polyps receive another colonoscopy within three years. Colonoscopy a Powerful Prevention Tool Though Laiyemo doesnt suggest altering the guidelines based on one study, he says he hopes the findings will propel more at-risk people to get a colonoscopy in the first place. Men, in particular, never like going for the procedure. Women need to encourage their men to go, he says After age 65, your risk really takes off, so it shows the importance of having colonoscopies as we age, Laiyemo says. And since obesity is a risk factor as well, it offers another reason to get those extra pounds off. Session moderator Alan Kristal, DrPH, of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, agrees. Colonoscopy is one of our most powerful tools for prevention because by having polyps removed, you can prevent cancer. This offers a nice overall package of factors that affect risk, telling us who should be targeted for surveillance, he tells WebMD. Men, Older People at Increased Risk For the study, the researchers analyzed data from nearly 2,000 participants in the Polyp Prevention Trial, designed to assess the impact of a low-fat, high-fiber diet on polyp recurrence. All the participants had at least one polyp removed before they started following the low-fat diet mandated in the study. Over the next four years, 524 of the participants developed new polyps. Results showed that: People who had multiple polyps removed the first time around were 2.5 times more likely to have a recurrence than those who had one polyp removed. Men were 76% more likely to have a recurrence than women. People aged 65 to 69 were at 87% increased risk compared with younger adults; those aged 70 to 74 had four times the risk of younger adults.

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Eating Fish May Help Ward Off Colon Polyps In Women

Colon Polyps More Common in Hispanic Men Than Women

Symptom Checker: Your Guide to Symptoms & Signs: Pinpoint Your Pain

Colon polyps are small growths on the intestinal lining that may develop into cancer. Previous research has suggested a link between inflammation and formation of colon polyps. Omega-3 fats in fish may reduce inflammation and help protect against the development of colon polyps, according to the researchers at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center in Nashville, Tenn.. Their study of more than 5,300 people found that women who ate at least three servings of fish a week were 33 percent less likely to develop colon polyps, and also had lower levels of an inflammation-related hormone called prostaglandin E2. “That was the aspect of the study we were particularly excited about because prostaglandin E2 is known to be associated with adenomas or polyps in colorectal cancers,” first author Dr. Harvey Murff, an associate professor of medicine, said in a Vanderbilt University Medical Center news release. Fish oil appears to have the same beneficial effect as aspirin in reducing inflammation, he said. The researchers were surprised to find that eating fish reduced the risk of colon polyps in women, but not in men. “The difference between men and women may be linked to their background diet. Even though men are eating more omega-3 fatty acids they may also be eating more omega-6 fatty acids and that may be blunting the effect,” Murff said. Omega-6 fatty acids are found in meats, grains and seed oils, including corn oil. Types of fish with high levels of the protective omega-3 fatty acids include tuna, salmon and sardines.

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Best Diets

In white patients, polyps are typically found on the left side of the colon. This difference may result from underlying molecular differences in the two patient groups, said study author Dr. Marcia Cruz-Correa, an associate professor of medicine and biochemistry at the University of Puerto Rico Cancer Center. The finding about polyp location is important because it highlights the need to use colonoscopy when conducting colorectal cancer screening in Hispanics. This is the most effective method of detecting polyps on the right side of the colon. The study was to be presented Sunday at the Digestive Diseases Week meeting in New Orleans. “Colorectal cancer screening rates among Hispanics are dangerously low. Currently only 40% get screened despite the fact that colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death among Hispanic women. As Hispanics become more acculturated to the U.S. lifestyle, they are losing the protective factor of their diet, which may account for the higher rates of colorectal cancer seen in U.S. Hispanics compared to the expected rates of cancer in their country of origin,” Cruz-Correa said.

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Too Much Sitting Tied to Higher Risk of Colon Polyps in Men

| Rectal | Exercise / Misc. | Men’s Problems / Misc. Posted: Monday, October 28, 2013, 12:00 PM MONDAY, Oct. 28 (HealthDay News) — Men who are more sedentary face a higher risk of recurring colon polyps, according to a new study, even if these men break up their downtime with bouts of recreational activities such as walking, jogging or golf. This suggests that extended inactivity is itself a risk factor for noncancerous colon polyps, benign tumors that can give rise to colorectal cancer, the researchers said. Known as “colorectal adenomas,” these polyps typically can be removed after being identified during a colorectal cancer screening, such as a colonoscopy. The recurrence of such polyps, however, seems to be greater among men (but not women) who are relatively less active. The researchers looked at activity levels among more than 1,700 men and women, and found that the more leisurely the men’s lifestyle, the greater their risk for precancerous polyps. Men who spent 11 or more hours a day in seated endeavors — such as writing or reading — were 45 percent more likely to develop polyps than those who spent less than seven hours a day engaged in sedentary behavior. The study, funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health and the U.S. National Cancer Institute, was schedule for presentation this week at the annual cancer-prevention conference of the American Association for Cancer Research, held in Oxon Hill, Md.

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Study Finds Key Link Responsible For Colon Cancer Initiation And Metastasis

The results provide critical new clues toward the prevention of colorectal cancer, the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S. Despite the availability of colonoscopy screening, the 5-year survival rate remains low, due to a large number patients presenting with advanced stages of the disease. Currently, there are no clinically available blood tests for the early detection of sporadic colon cancer. Inflammation has long been associated with increasing ones risk for colon cancer. For instance, more than 20 percent of patients with a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) develop colorectal cancer within 30 years of diagnosis. This colitis-associated cancer has a slow progression, but a very poor response to treatment and a high mortality rate. Researchers have known that the broad mechanisms of cancer involve an interplay with the immune system response that includes: recruiting immune cells that influence the tumor microenvironment, escaping from host immunosurveillance and suppression, shifting of the host immune response, and tumor-associated angiogenesis to establish the blood supply. For the study, the research team first knocked-out or removed the CXCR2 gene in mice, and found that the signs typically associated with inflammation were prevented. Furthermore, they demonstrated that CXCR2 dramatically suppressed colonic inflammation and the colitis associated tumor formation, growth and progression in mice. CXCR2 decorates the outer part of immune cells called myeloid-derived suppressor cells, or MDSCs, that work to block the immune response of killer CD8+ T cells. In the knockout mice, without CXCR2 present, the MDSC cells could no longer migrate from the circulatory system to the colon, dodge the killer CD8+ T cell immune response, and feed the blood supply of the tumor environment. Furthermore, when they transplanted normal MDSC cells (with normal CXCR2) into the knockout mice, tumor formation was restored. These results provide the first genetic evidence that CXCR2 is required for recruitment of MDSCs into inflamed colonic mucosa and colitis-associated tumors, said DuBois. For DuBois, who has devoted his career to unraveling the inflammatory circuitry responsible for colon cancer, the results help connect the dots between the immune system, inflammation and tumor formation and metastasis.

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