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Cancer that originates in the cells of the colon or rectum is commonly termed colorectal cancer. In the majority of the cases, these initially present as adenomatous polyps. Genetic mutations that occur in these polyps, over time, can trigger cancerous changes. Although the exact cause of the cancer is not known, it is believed to be associated with the risk factors like family history of colon or rectal cancer, unhealthy dietary habits, excessive alcohol intake, inflammatory bowel disease and prolonged habit of smoking. The malignancy can affect any part of the colon or rectum or both, and is marked by the following symptoms:

  • Sudden changes in bowel habits
  • Pieces of blood in the stool
  • Anaemia
  • Abdominal and pelvic discomfort
  • Unexplained bloating
  • Unintended weight loss
  • Nausea and vomiting

Treatment 
Laparoscopic surgery is a gold standard treatment for colon and rectal cancer. The former is referred to as laparoscopic colectomy. It involves the use of a laparoscope, which is a long flexible tube fitted with a surgical camera on one of its ends. The doctor uses special equipment that are guided using detailed imaging guidance. The latter is referred to as laparoscopic rectal resection. It is a complex surgical procedure that involves the removal of the anus, rectum and sigmoid colon via a minimally invasive approach.

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