March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness month. We’d like to take the opportunity to share information with you about colorectal cancer (or bowel cancer) in the hope that by raising awareness we can continue to reduce the number of people impacted by this type of cancer.
National Colorectal Cancer Month raises awareness for colorectal cancer, commonly known as bowel cancer. Colorectal Cancer Awareness month is an opportunity to learn more about this type of cancer and to share information including stories of those impacted by colorectal cancer. It’s also a time to support organisations, such as ACRF, working to equip researchers with the tools they need to improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of all types of cancer.
Colorectal cancer is caused by the mutation of genes that cause cells in the large intestine to reproduce abnormally and form polyps. Most bowel polyps are not cancerous, but some polyps may become cancerous if left to grow into tumours. Colorectal cancer is also referred to as colon cancer or rectal cancer, depending on where it is found in the intestine.
Colorectal cancer most commonly develops in the lower part of the descending colon, the sigmoid colon or rectum. More than 95 per cent of colorectal cancers are adenocarcinomas, cancers that start in cells forming the mucus-making glands that lubricate the colon and rectum. Other rare types include squamous cell cancers, Gastrointestinal stromal tumours, carcinoid tumours, sarcomas and lymphomas.
Colorectal Cancer is estimated to be the second most diagnosed type of cancer for both men and women and the third most common cause of death from cancer. It was estimated that over 15,000 Australians would be diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 2020.
March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness month in the US and in Australia, June is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month.
Getting involved in Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month gives everyone the opportunity to make a difference. You can:
There are many ways to support the work of ACRF and together, with everyone’s input, we will achieve our goal to outsmart cancer. For more information on how you can support colorectal cancer research, learn how you can get involved with ACRF.
Blue is the colour for colorectal cancer awareness. Supporters are encouraged to wear blue clothes and/or blue ribbons to help spread awareness.
ACRF has partnered with several research institutes on initiatives to develop better prevention, earlier detection and more effective treatments for colorectal cancer. Some of these research initiatives include: