Colon cancer is one of the most preventable and treatable forms of cancer when it’s found early. Most cases of colon cancer begin as small, noncancerous (benign) clumps of cells called adenomatous polyps.
Over time some of these polyps become colon cancers.
Polyps may be small and produce few, if any, symptoms. For this reason, doctors recommend regular screening tests to help prevent colon cancer by identifying polyps before they become colon cancer.
Signs and symptoms of colon cancer include:
1. Diarrhea or constipation (or a change in the consistency of your stool)
2. Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool
3. Persistent abdominal discomfort, such as cramps, gas or pain
4. A feeling that your bowel doesn’t empty completely
5. Weakness or fatigue
6. Unexplained weight loss
Many people with colon cancer experience no symptoms in the early stages of the disease. When symptoms appear, they’ll likely vary, depending on the cancer’s size and location in your large intestine.
See your doctor if you notice any symptoms of colon cancer, such as blood in your stool or a persistent change in bowel habits.