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Treatments & Coping With Colon Cancer
By Logan Pallas
Patients who receive a diagnosis of colon cancer quickly become depressed and have a lot of unanswered questions about their future. The most important thing for them to realize is that they are not alone and that their friends and family are there to provide love and support.
When dealing with any type of illness, including colon cancer, family and friends are the first thought of a positive support system. Understandably, these same people may be experiencing a lot of emotional pain and anxiety themselves, which stems from seeing their loved on suffering from an illness. If, for these reasons, a cancer patient cannot find support at home, it's a good idea to join a local support group or become involved in an activity that they enjoy. If their health allows it, a cancer patient should continue living life and enjoying every day as possible. While quality of life is very important, making sure to take time out for rest is one of the key points for successful recovery from any illness.
Immediately following diagnosis, a colon cancer patient may want to visit their local library or research the internet for educational resources, of which there are plenty available. This information will help the patient to become better informed and allow them to be more involved with their treatment. It's important to know, and understand, what is happening to the body during an illness, treatments and recovery. It is equally recommended that a patient remain involved in his/her care for as long as possible. This can be achieved by conducting research, asking the physician a lot of questions and preparing for best and worst case scenarios.
Depending on how advanced a cancer patient's illness is, several treatment options are available. If a patient decides to move forward with treatment, he/she may also wish to consult another physician for a second opinion in order to confirm the diagnosis and recommended treatment. The best outcome is to eliminate the cancer completely but, if that is not possible, the doctor may be able to stop the cancer from spreading or to relieve the patient's symptoms and discomfort.
Assuming the patient's health will allow it, and he/she wishes to pursue remedies, the main method of treatment is surgery. Depending on the location and size of the cancer, a doctor may be able to remove all or part of the colon. If a polyp is the only cancer that is known to be present, it may be all that needs removing. In some cases of colon cancer, the patient must wear a permanent colostomy following surgery. This occurs if the cancer is so advanced that it forces the doctor to remove the entire colon.
Another common approach to treating colon cancer is for the patient to begin a series of chemotherapy treatments. This process involves the intake of medicines to help fight the cancer cells, which can either be taken orally or delivered through the patient's veins. This option is often most useful to rid the patient of any lingering cancer cells following surgery. In addition, chemotherapy may be used to control the growth of cancer, relieve symptoms and prolong life. Radiation therapy, often used in conjunction with chemotherapy to help combat various other cancers, is not a treatment used to help colon cancer patients after surgery.
This article should not be construed as professional medical advice. If you, or someone that you know, is concerned about the possibility of cancer, you should seek medical attention immediately. A medical doctor can discuss various options, prevention and treatment possibilities should the presence of cancer be detected. A series of tests may be conducted in order to confirm, or rule out, any such diagnosis and can only be done by a medical doctor.