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Cancer of the Colon and Rectum

  • Posted: 05/26/2006

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About This Booklet

This National Cancer Institute (NCI) booklet (NIH Publication No. 06-1552) is about cancer of the colon and rectum. Cancer that begins in the colon is called colon cancer, and cancer that begins in the rectum is called rectal cancer. Cancer that starts in either of these organs may also be called colorectal cancer.

In 2013, about 143,000 people in the United States will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer. It is the fourth most common cancer in men, after skin, prostate, and lung cancer. It is also the fourth most common cancer in women, after skin, breast, and lung cancer.

You will read about possible risk factors, screening, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. You will also find lists of questions to ask your doctor. It may help to take this booklet with you to your next appointment.

This text may be reproduced or reused freely. Please credit the National Cancer Institute as the source. Any graphics may be owned by the artist or publisher who created them, and permission may be needed for their reuse.