Colon Cancer Symptoms in Women

Colon cancer affects millions of women in the U.S. every year, yet it’s a disease that often takes a backseat to the information we receive about breast cancer and more female specific cancers. While incidents of colon cancer are slightly higher in men than in women, colon cancer is still a disease that warrants much attention by the female gender especially because – like many other cancers – early detection is crucial for effective treatment and recovery.

So what should women look for when it comes to colon cancer? There are a few key symptoms that, while they can signify the existence of other conditions or even nothing at all, should be communicated to your doctor so that, if necessary, further testing can be scheduled. Some symptoms of colon cancer in women include:

* Change in bowel movements – Long stretches of unexplained diarrhea and constipation may require further testing and may be a sign of colon cancer, as can abdominal bloating, nausea, vomiting, and cramping.

* Thin or smaller bowel movements – Those with colon cancer may notice that their stools are smaller and/or thinner than normal. This can result from the narrowing of the colon walls as cancer cells continue to accumulate. Bowel movements may also be accompanied by discomfort or pain.

* Blood in stool – While evidence of blood in the stool may not appear at every bowel movement, it is important to note when it does occur. Be sure to alert your doctor if have experienced blood in your stool, have seen blood in the toilet, or have blood on the toilet paper after wiping.

* Fatigue – This is a much more general symptom and can be attributed to a variety of other conditions as well as just the fatigue that accompanies everyday life. But if your fatigue is unusual, continues to worsen, or is accompanied by any of the above symptoms, it’s important to see your doctor.

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