Regular screening tests can help detect and diagnose colon cancer at an early stage. If you have symptoms that indicate you may have colon cancer, your doctor will perform a physical examination, take your medical history, and recommend other diagnostic tests, including:
Colonoscopy: This procedure involves the use of a long and flexible tube with a small camera attached, allowing the doctor to see the entire colon and rectum. Your doctor will also remove tissue from suspicious areas using the surgical tools through the tube. These tissue samples (biopsies) will be then examined under a microscope to look for cancerous or precancerous cells.
Imaging tests: The doctor may recommend ultrasounds, X-rays, CT scans, PET scans or MRI scans to determine the stage of the cancer and find out if it has spread to other organs.
Genetic testing: Testing a tumour’s genetic makeup can help the care team find out what caused the cancer to grow as well as choose the treatments that work best for patients. BRAF, EGFR and KRAS are the most common mutations and have specific treatments.
The doctor may also order blood tests and stool tests.
Fortis offers the most advanced treatment options for all stages and degrees of colon cancer. Treatment options include:
Surgery: At Fortis, patients have access to all available types of surgery -including laparoscopic and robotic surgery. These minimally invasive procedures use small incisions, helping patients recover faster.
Endoscopic treatment: Polyps are often removed during a procedure called endoscopy. Patients with larger polyps or with more than three polyps should perform follow-up colonoscopies more frequently.
Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy uses drugs to destroy tumour cells and can be used at various stages of colon cancer treatment. Chemotherapy is often given after surgery if the tumour has spread to the lymph nodes. Sometimes, chemotherapy is given prior to surgery to help shrink the tumour and reduce the extent of surgery.
Radiation therapy: This type of therapy uses powerful X-rays and protons to kill cancer cells.
Targeted drug therapy: Targeted drugs, which are usually reserved for patients with advanced colon cancer, are given along with chemotherapy.
Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy may be recommended to treat late stage colon cancer.
Whether you’ve been diagnosed with early stage colon cancer or more advanced disease, Fortis provides treatment options that give the best chance to cure or control cancer growth