This topic is considered embarrassing to be talked about. However, this type of cancer does occur and it is the most aggressive type. Anal cancer is not something people talk about in the public.
So this article will give you some answers to this type of cancer (anal cancer) and how to recognize it and what to do if it happens.
Anal cancer can be detected in its early stages. However, you need to know what to look for in order to detect it. Its unfavorable location, which makes it a taboo for most of the population, is yet another reason why this cancer is often overlooked.
What Is Anal Cancer?
Anal cancer develops at the opening of the rectum (anus) from a lump which is created by the abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells in the anus.
There is a difference between anal cancer and colorectal cancer. The colorectal cancer affects the colon and the entire rectum, whereas anal cancer only affects the opening of the rectum or the anus.
Anal cancer affects nearly 8,000 Americans every year, 1,000 of whom die. One in four people is diagnosed with this cancer only after it spreads to the lymph nodes, and one in ten people is diagnoses after the cancer has metastasized to other organs. Unfortunately, this cancer has been on the rise in recent years, although it’s still rarer than colorectal, rectal or colon cancer.
Here are the Anal Cancer Symptoms
These are the symptoms you should never ignore:
- Itching in the anus
- Tenderness or pain in the anus
- Unusual bowel movements
- Anal bleeding
- Unusual discharge from the anus
- A hardened area or a lump near the anus
Usually what contribute to anal cancer are certain factors such as weakened immune system, smoking, and frequent anus irritation. Anal cancer mostly affects adults over 60. Moreover, men under 35 and women over 60 are also at a higher risk of developing colon cancer.