Obesity Risk Factor for Colon Cancer in Women
Colon Cancer is the third most diagnosed cancer in the United States in both men and women. It is not only preventable, but potentially a curative disease. Signs and symptoms of colon cancer include:
- A change in bowel habits, including diarrhea/constipation or a change in the consistency of stool
- Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool
- Recent diagnosis of anemia
- Cramps, abdominal pain, bloating, nausea or vomiting
- Weakness or fatigue
- Unexplained or unintentional weight loss
Reena Tahilramani, MD, colorectal surgeon at Good Samaritan, states that anyone experiencing any of these signs and symptoms should discuss the possibility of colon cancer with their physician.
“Guidelines recommend colon cancer screenings starting at age 50,” said Dr. Tahilramani. “However, earlier screening is recommended for patients with previously known high risk factors that include African-American patients, personal or family history of cancer or polyps, inflammatory bowel disease like Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, a sedentary lifestyle, diabetes, smoking, and heavy alcohol consumption.”
New research now shows that young obese women with a high body mass index (BMI) have a higher risk for colorectal cancer than the general population. A recent study in the Journal of American Medical Association Oncology tracked more than 85,000 women for 22 years beginning at the age of 25. Data showed a high incidence of colorectal cancer in obese women under 45 years old and a 93% higher risk for the disease when compared to women of normal weight.
The Cancer Center at Good Samaritan is the diagnostic and treatment center of choice for thousands of patients in Suffolk County. At Good Samaritan, specialists care for the whole person – physically, emotionally and spiritually – to provide outstanding outcomes. This dedication and commitment has been recognized by numerous organizations, including the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons who has honored the Medical Center with its Outstanding Achievement Award on 5 consecutive surveys, 15 years in a row, making it 1 of only 7 facilities nationwide that have been honored with this distinction.