The very mention of the term "colon cancer" tends to bring up dread in the majority of us. It can thus feel very reassuring for your doctor say that you simply have hemorrhoids. That there is no need to be concerned about the blood in your stool. However this reassurance ought to only come after the physician has eliminated the chance of colon cancer (and other potentially dangerous gastrointestinal issues). Else, you may not discover that you have colon cancer until it is too late. Should a doctor decide without testing considers that claims of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding by a patient are due to hemorrhoids and it eventually turns out to be colon cancer, that doctor might not have met the standard of care and the patient may have a legal claim against that physician.
It is estimated that there are presently more than 10 million men and women with hemorrhoids and another 1,000,000 new instances of hemorrhoids will likely arise this year as opposed to a little more than the 100 thousand new cases of colon cancer that will be detected this year. In addition, colon cancers do not always. If they do, the bleeding might be intermittent. Also subject to the location of the cancer in the colon, the blood may not even be seen in the stool. Perhaps it is in part as a result of the difference in the volume of cases being diagnosed that some doctors merely consider that the existence of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding is because of hemorrhoids. This amounts to playing the odds. A physician making this diagnosis is going to be right more than 90% of the time. It seems sensible, doesn't it? The concern, however, is that if the doctor is incorrect in this diagnosis, the patient might not learn he or she has colon cancer until it has progressed to a late stage, perhaps even to the point where treatment is no longer effective.
In the event colon cancer is discovered before it metastasizes outside the colon, the patient's chances of surviving the cancer are over 80%. The 5 year survival rate is a statistical guage of the percentage of people who survive the disease for at least five years subsequent to diagnosis. Treatment protocols for early stage colon cancer frequently requires only surgery to remove the tumor and surrounding portions of the colon. Depending on factors such as the stage of the cancer and the individual's medical history (including family medical history), age, and the person's physical condition, chemotherapy may or may not be necessary.
This is why physicians generally advise that a colonoscopy should be ordered immediately if a patient complains of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding. A colonoscopy is a method that uses a flexible scope with a camera on the end is used to visualize the inside of the colon. If growths (polyps or tumors) are found, they can be removed (if small enough) or sampled and examined for the existence of cancer (by biopsy). Colon cancer might effectively be ruled out as the reason for the blood providing that a colonoscopy detects no cancer
However, if the cancer is not diagnosed until it has spread outside of the colon and has reached the lymph nodes, the person's five year survival rate will generally be roughly fifty three percent Aside from surgery to remove the tumor and adjacent areas of the colon treatment for this stage of colon cancer requires chemotherapy in an attempt to get rid of any cancer that might remain in the body. If the cancer reaches distant organs such as the liver, lungs, or brain, the individual's 5 year survival rate is reduced to near 8%. Now treatment may entail surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and other medications. Treatment might no longer be effective once the cancer is this advanced. When treatment ceases to be effective, colon cancer is fatal. This year, about 48,000 men and women will pass away in the U.S. from colon cancer metastasis.
By telling the patient that blood in the stool or rectal bleeding as resulting from hemorrhoids without doing the proper tests to rule out colon cancer, a doctor places the patient at risk of not finding out that the patient colon cancer until it progresses to an advanced, possibly untreatable, stage. This may constitute a departure from the accepted standard of medical care and might bring about a medical malpractice case.
If you or a a member of your family were assured by a doctor that blood in the stool or rectal bleeding were caused by nothing more than hemorrhoids, and were subsequently diagnosed with advanced colon cancer, you should speak to a lawyer right away. This article is for basic educational purposes only and does not constitute legal (or medical) advice. If you have any medical issues you should consult with a physician. You should not act, or refrain from acting, based upon any information contained herein but should rather seek professional legal counsel. A competent lawyer with experience in medical malpractice might be able to help you determine if you have a claim for a delay in the diagnosis of the colon cancer. Immediately consult with an attorney are there is a time limit in lawsuits like these.
Artice Source: http://www.articlesphere.com
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