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Back in the mid 19th century, a French doctor, Armand Trousseau, discovered a connection between cancer and thrombosis – the formation of often dangerous blood clots that can lead to venous occlusion. About twelve different blood proteins called clotting factors interact in a coordinated manner in the blood clotting (coagulation) process. At the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) in Heidelberg, scientists headed by Professor Dr. The team found the most obvious connection for a variant that substantially increases the risk of thrombosis and which is known as factor V Leiden (FVL).
Another connection with bowel cancer prevalence was found by the research team for a particular gene variant of clotting factor XIII: People with this mutation are slightly more rarely affected by venous thrombosis than those who carry the factor XIII standard version.
Earthquake in EcuadorWe are saddened by the situation caused by the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck the town of Muisne, in Ecuador, on April 17, causing considerable damage near the epicentre and the surrounding areas. This factsheet is for people who have bowel cancer, or who would like information about it.
Bowel cancer is a lump created by an abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells in the lining of the bowel. The information on the video provided does not constitute advice on diagnosis or the treatment for heart disease and such advice should always be sought from a doctor or another suitably qualified health professional. Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer in the UK; around 37,000 people are diagnosed each year.
Bowel cancer, also known as colorectal cancer, is the name for any cancer of your large bowel and rectum (back passage). Usually, large bowel cancers develop from small, non-cancerous (benign) growths of tissue called polyps that can extend from the lining of your bowel wall. A sigmoidoscopy, which is a procedure used to look inside your rectum and the lower part of your bowel. A barium enema, which involves placing a fluid containing barium (a substance which shows up on X-rays) into your bowel via your rectum. If your doctor diagnoses bowel cancer, you may need further tests to find the size and position of the cancer. The screening kit contains a faecal occult blood (FOB) test that can detect small amounts of blood in your faeces. The type of treatment you have will depend on the size of the tumour, its position and whether it has spread. If you have surgery, the part of your large bowel that contains the cancer will be removed and the two open ends joined together.
Sometimes, depending on the location and size of the cancer that is removed, the two ends of your bowel can't be rejoined. If you have cancer in your rectum, you may need surgery to remove the part of your rectum that contains the cancer, as well as the fatty tissue and lymph nodes around your rectum. These treatments are given to destroy any remaining cancer cells and to prevent it spreading further.
Monoclonal antibodies (MABs) are medicines that are designed to recognise and target markers that are commonly carried by cancer cells.
There is evidence that taking the following steps can help to reduce your risk of getting bowel cancer.
Why are people with bowel conditions such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis at a higher risk of developing bowel cancer? Why are people with bowel conditions such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis more likely to develop bowel cancer? Inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are thought to cause prolonged damage to your bowel over a long period of time which could result in bowel cancer.
Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are both chronic diseases that cause your bowel to become inflamed. It's thought that over time the damage caused to the lining of your bowel increases the risk of cancerous cells developing. If you have any questions about Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis or bowel cancer, talk to your doctor.
Studies have found that people who have high amounts of calcium in their diet may be less likely to develop bowel cancer than those who have little calcium in their diet. So far, these findings have only shown that calcium supplements may contribute to the prevention of bowel polyps. At this stage, it’s too early to say whether extra calcium in your diet will help protect against bowel cancer.


A colostomy and ileostomy are both surgical procedures that involve bringing part of your bowel to your abdomen wall to create an artificial opening (stoma). If you have any questions or concerns about colostomy or ileostomy, talk to your surgeon, GP or nurse.
This factsheet is for people who are having a breast lump removed, or who would like information about it. Today it is known that cancer and its treatment change blood flow properties and thus promote the formation of clots.
In the same way as hemophilia (decreased blood clotting) is inherited, genes also play a role in an increased clotting tendency (thrombophilia): There are well studied gene variants (polymorphisms) of a number of clotting factors which are associated with an increased or decreased clotting tendency. Hermann Brenner have been studying six gene variants of different clotting factors for a possible connection with colorectal cancer risk. Thus, the interplay of all coagulation (clotting) factors leads to the formation of active thrombin, which, in turn, activates hemostatic fibrin.
It also makes a difference whether the gene variant is present on both chromosomes or just on one of them.
The prognosis (outlook) and chance of cure are much better if this cancer is detected at an early stage rather than at a later stage. Food passes through your small bowel (the longer, thinner part of your bowel) where nutrients are absorbed.
Your rectum, at the end of your large bowel, is where faeces collects before passing through your anus as a bowel movement.
One of the main factors is increasing age – more than eight out of 10 people diagnosed with bowel cancer are over 60.
The test is done using a narrow, flexible, tube-like telescopic camera called a colonoscope. The FOB test doesn’t diagnose bowel cancer, but the results show if you need to have your bowel examined.
Lymph nodes (glands found throughout your body that are part of your immune system) near your bowel are often removed because they are the first place the cancer usually spreads to. If this happens, the opening nearest the beginning of your bowel will be brought out on to the skin surface of your abdomen. You’re more likely to need a colostomy if you have cancer of the rectum than if you have cancer of the colon. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy are also sometimes used to shrink the tumour before surgery or to kill any cancer cells that are left after surgery.
Questions have been suggested by health professionals, website feedback and requests via email.
If you have had your condition for between 10 and 20 years, it's recommended that you should be screened every three years. Research has suggested that people who have more calcium in their diet are less likely to develop polyps in their bowel. It helps build strong bones and teeth, regulates your muscle contractions (including your heartbeat) and makes sure your blood clots normally.
More research needs to be done to establish whether increasing calcium in your diet prevents bowel cancer.
Good sources of calcium include milk, cheese and other dairy products, green leafy vegetables (such as broccoli), soya products, nuts and anything made with fortified flour, and sardines and pilchards.
The difference between them is in the part of the bowel that the stoma joins: a colostomy is when your large bowel is joined to the opening, whereas an ileostomy is when your small bowel is joined to the opening.
However, most people are able to carry on with their lives as they did before and participate in activities such as swimming. However, clots do not only occur as a side effect and consequence of cancer, but, vice versa, an increased blood clotting tendency may also be associated with an elevated cancer risk. In a large study, they analyzed the occurrence of these six variants in approximately 1.800 colorectal cancer patients and in the same number of healthy control persons. For the other four gene variants studied the team found no connection with bowel cancer risk. However, thrombin also contributes to the formation of new blood vessels and is able to dissolve the extracellular matrix, which is the adhesive that keeps cells together.
We therefore have to analyze in detail which clotting factors affect cancer risk and in what manner,” explained study head Hermann Brenner.
If the cancer isn’t treated, it can grow through the wall of your bowel and spread to other parts of your body.


Bowel cancer screening kits are sent to men and women aged between 60 and 69, although if you’re older you can also request a kit. A colostomy is an opening of your large bowel onto the surface of your tummy (abdomen) and an ileostomy is an opening of your small bowel onto the surface of the abdomen. When describing an illness, the term chronic refers to how long a person has it, not to how serious a condition is. It has been estimated that bowel cancer is caused by ulcerative colitis in about one in every 100 people diagnosed with bowel cancer. When you have had it for between 20 and 30 years this will be increased to every two years.
More recently, research has suggested that it may also help prevent certain cancers, including bowel cancer. The research found that taking 1200mg of calcium supplements a day helps to prevent polyps (growths) developing in your large bowel. An operation is normally carried out a couple of months after your initial treatment to rejoin your bowel and remove the stoma. There are patient support groups available, such as the Colostomy Association and the Ileostomy and internal pouch support group that can provide support and advice on having a stoma. The knowledge of these connections is the first prerequisite for finding out whether and for whom drugs that affect blood clotting may prevent bowel cancer. The aim is to offer an easy screening test to detect colorectal cancer when it is at an early stage and before symptoms start. This type of screening means that if you do develop bowel cancer, it can be detected and treated early.
However no research has directly shown that taking calcium supplements has any effect on your risk of getting bowel cancer. The stoma is usually placed low down on your abdomen so it's hidden under your clothing.
Some younger people with increased risk of developing colorectal cancer are also offered screening. Colorectal cancer screening aims to detect colorectal cancer at an early stage when there is a good chance that treatment will cure the cancer. There are two methods of screening for colorectal cancer: A test to detect traces of blood in you faeces - the faecal occult blood (FOB) test. If you are older than the set ages for routine testing, you may still be able to request a kit to test yourself. Routine screening will then be offered to you every two years until you reach the age when screening stops.
A colonoscopy is a test in which a long, thin, flexible telescope (a colonoscope) is passed through your rectum into your colon (large bowel) in order for the whole of your colon and rectum to be looked at in detail. For example, some medical conditions including haemorrhoids (piles) can lead to a positive test. Colorectal cancer screening can also detect polyps (growths) on the inner lining of the bowel. Following a colonoscopy after screening, about 5 in 10 people who have a colonoscopy will have a normal result, about 4 in 10 will be found to have a polyp, which if removed may prevent cancer from developing, and about 1 in 10 people will be found to have cancer. It is therefore important to be aware of the symptoms of bowel cancer and to see your doctor if you are concerned.
The study found that people who had one routine flexible sigmoidoscopy, between the ages of 55 and 64, had a reduced risk of developing colorectal cancer by about a third. Also, relatives of people with certain diseases have an increased risk of of developing colorectal cancer.
These groups of people offered screening tests include: People with certain inherited conditions, which include familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP), hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC), and some other syndromes including Peutz-Jeghers syndrome and juvenile polyposis syndrome. The different diseases and family associations mentioned above have varying levels of risk. If you have a disease or family history that causes an increased risk of developing colorectal cancer, your doctor will advise on the type of tests recommended and their frequency. The guidelines (cited at the end) from the The British Society of Gastroenterology may also be of interest.



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