What is Rectal Cancer?
Cancer is a disease that affects the body at the cellular level. It occurs when abnormalities start to develop in cells and they start to divide without any order or control. In a healthy body cells divide and grow as required. Unrestrained cell growth leads to the formation of a tissue mass, otherwise known as a tumor. Tumors that spread to different parts of the body are known as malignant tumors and those that do not are known as benign tumors.
There are many different types of cancer. They are classified depending on the part of the body that is first affected. The rectum is the last part of the colon (large intestine) and cancer that develops in the region is known as rectal cancer. Together with cancers formed in the colon, they are referred to as colorectal cancers.
Rectal cancer begins in the rectum as a small growth of tissue known as a polyp. Most polyps are benign or non-cancerous but some may eventually turn cancerous. Preventing the formation of polyps by following a healthy diet and exercise regimen can greatly reduce the chances of developing rectal cancer.