What Is Cancer Survivorship Care Planning

Colon cancer, also recognized as colorectal cancer, is a tumor that develops in the large intestine or rectum. These two organs are in the lower part of the digestive system. It is often diagnosed with a colonoscopy.

Research led by the American Cancer Society (ACS) shows that about 1 in 25 women and 1 in 23 men will develop the latter during their life. Your doctor is most likely to use staging as a guideline to know how far along the cancer has progressed. Consequently, your doctor gets the best care plan for you and estimates your cost of treatment. The following are the care plan tools for colorectal cancer.


What Is Cancer Survivorship Care Planning

It is expected for your doctor to eliminate cancerous polyps in the first stages of the cancer, especially if the polyp has not attached itself to the bowel walls. If the tumor has extended to your bowels, your doctor may have to take out a part of the rectum together with any lymph nodes around. A colostomy may also be performed, and this consists of making an opening in the wall of the abdomen for waste removal, and it can be short-term or long-term.

Radiation Therapy

It involves using intense energy rays like the one used in x-rays to eliminate cancerous cells before and after surgery. This therapy occurs along with chemotherapy as an adjunct therapy.

Alternatively, radiation therapy is applied during remission of colon cancer to prevent re-occurrence or metastasis.

Chemotherapy Therapy

What Is Cancer Survivorship Care Planning

It consists of the use of medicines to kill cancer cells. Moreover, for individuals with colon cancer, chemotherapy usually is conducted after an operation whereby it is used to eliminate the cancerous cells. This procedure also controls tumor growth. Medications that are prescribed by the doctor to treat the cancer include:

  • Fluorouracil
  • Capecitabine
  • Irinotecan
  • Oxaliplatin

The therapy often has side effects; therefore, it is advisable to use additional drugs to mitigate side effects.


An oncologist may recommend the use of immunotherapy. Medications that have been accepted by the Food and Drug Administration to assist in the treatment of colon cancer include:

  • Regorafenib
  • Nivolumab
  • Bevacizumab
  • Ziv-aflibercept
  • Panitumumab

These medications are used in management of end-stage colon cancer that has spread to other body parts and does not respond to other treatments.

Palliative Care

What Is Cancer Survivorship Care Planning

Palliative care entails providing the right environment both medically and emotionally for patients diagnosed with terminal colon cancer. Note that for such patients, comfort is critical. As a result, such patients are given analgesics for pain management and emotional support from family members, psychologists, and loved ones.

New advancements in early discovery and treatment of the latter have been made in recent years, which shows a promising future for the patients and their families. Experts have provided an overview of what you can expect in the treatment, and this involves;

Early detection

According to the American Cancer Society, colon cancer's death rate has been reducing over the years. The reason for this is due to improved treatments and early detection of the tumor. Today, several tests assist in the detection of early signs and even the chances of getting it.

Routine Screening

It is vital in detecting the first stages of colon cancer. This screening is done through:

  • Colonoscopy
  • Fecal occult blood test
  • Virtual colonoscopy
  • Fecal immunochemical test (FIT)
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy

These medications are used in management of end-stage colon cancer that has spread to other body parts and does not respond to other treatments.