Just the thought that one may have colon cancer tends to bring up fear in the majority of people. It can hence feel quite reassuring to have your doctor tell you that you merely have hemorrhoids and that there is no need to be anxious about the blood in your stool. But this reassurance ought to not be given until the doctor has ruled out the likelihood of colon cancer (and other potentially serious gastrointestinal problems). Else, you may not learn that you have colon cancer until it is too late. Should a physician decide without testing considers that complaints of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding by a patient are the result of hemorrhoids and it subsequently turns out to be colon cancer, that doctor might have committed medical malpractice. Under those circumstances, the patient may be able to pursue a lawsuit against that doctor.
Mere than 10 million men and women have hemorrhoids and another million new incidents of hemorrhoids will probably arise this year as opposed to a little more than the 100 thousand new instances of colon cancer that will be detected this year. In addition, colon cancers do not always. When they do, the bleeding may be non-consistent. Also depending on the location of the cancer in the colon, the blood might not even be visible in the stool. Possibly it is simply due to the difference in the quantity of cases being identified that some physicians basically consider that the presence of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding is due to hemorrhoids. This amounts to gambling, pure and simple. A doctor making this diagnosis is going to be correct greater than 90% of the time. It seems realistic, doesn’t it? The difficulty, though, is that if the doctor is wrong in this diagnosis, the patient may not find out he or she has colon cancer before it has developed to an advanced stage, possibly to the point where treatment is no longer effective.
This is why doctors typically recommend that a colonoscopy ought to be ordered right away if someone complains of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding. A colonoscopy is a procedure whereby a flexible scope with a camera on the end is employed to examine the inside of the colon. If anything is found during the procedure, it may be possible to remove it immediately if it is not very big. In any case, it will be biopsied to check for cancer. Providing no cancer is detected during the colonoscopy may colon cancer be ruled out as a source of the blood.
But, should the cancer not be found until it has spread past the colon into the lymph nodes, the individual’s 5 year survival rate will normally be approximately fifty three percent Aside from surgery to take out the tumor and surrounding areas of the colon treatment for this stage of colon cancer requires chemotherapy in an attempt to eliminate any cancer that might be left in the body. When the cancer spreads to distant organs such as the liver, lungs, or brain, the patient’s five year survival rate is cut down to approximately eight percent. If treatment options exist for a patient at this stage, they might include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and other medications. Treatment might no longer be effective once the cancer is this advanced. When treatment stops working, colon cancer is fatal. This year, about thirty nine thousand men and women will pass away in the U.S. from stage four colorectal cancer.
By diagnosing complaints of blood in the stool or rectal bleeding as caused by hemorrhoids without conducting the correct tests to eliminate the possibility of colon cancer, a physician places the patient at risk of not knowing he or she has colon cancer until it reaches an advanced, possibly no longer treatable, stage. This might constitute a departure from the accepted standard of medical care and may end in a medical malpractice claim.
If you or a member of your family were told by a doctor that blood in the stool or rectal bleeding were due to only hemorrhoids, and were later diagnosed with advanced colon cancer, you ought to consult a lawyer at once. This article is for basic educational usage only and does not constitute legal (or medical) advice. For any medical concerns you should seek advice from physician. You should not act, or refrain from acting, based upon any information in this article but ought to rather consult with an attorney. A competent attorney with experience in medical malpractice may 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 such as these.