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The presentation is somewhat different depending on whether the tumour is on the left side of the colon or on the right. Left sided tumours present with altered bowel habit and rectal bleeding. Right sided tumors present later than those on the left due to the larger diameter of the colon on the right and the liquid nature of the stools there. There is a well described relationship between anaemia and caecal cancer. Rectal tumors may present with tenesemus, which is the senstion of incomplete evacuation.

Caecal Tumour \ensuremath{\leftrightarrow} Anaemia

20% of patients have disseminated disease at presentation. Severe weight loss should raise suspicion about this.

Patients presenting with obstruction tend to have more advanced disease. The cardinal symptoms of obstrution are; pain, vomiting, constipation and abdominal distension.

* Read more about:Obstruction
Constant abdominal pain suggests the possibility of locally advanced disease.


Adrian P. Ireland