Sunday, March 3, 2024

Colon Cancer Stages 4 Survival Rate

What Questions Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider

Stage 4 Colon Cancer Survivor Sandy Kyrkostas: NYP Gave Me Hope

If youve been diagnosed with rectal cancer, youll want to gather as much information as you can. Here are some questions to ask your healthcare provider:

  • What stage of rectal cancer do I have?
  • How far has the cancer spread?
  • What are my treatment options?
  • How will treatment affect my quality of life?
  • Will I be able to work during treatment?

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Being diagnosed with rectal cancer can be overwhelming. You may feel sad, scared, frustrated or angry. Ask your healthcare provider about resources that can help you navigate this difficult time. You may also want to consider joining a support group for people with rectal cancer. Knowledge is power. Having a full understanding of your diagnosis and treatment options can empower you and help you take back control of your health.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 08/27/2021.


Treatments During Palliative Care

When a patient’s colorectal cancer is incurable, treatments may continue to relieve symptoms or complications during palliative care.

For example, surgery may remove some cancer tissue, bypass the worst affected parts of the colon, or place stents. Other surgical goals may be to reduce bleeding from the tumor, reduce abdominal pain, or remove an obstruction from the colon.

As with many disorders, genetics plays a role in the prognosis for a patient with stage IV colon cancer. Fewer than 600 genes are linked to colorectal cancer outcomes. When expressed , some of these genes are unfavorable to outcomes, while others are associated with better survival .

Diagnosis For Stage 4 Colon Cancer

The proper diagnosis for stage 4 colon cancer might require patience. This is because several tests may be needed for detecting and locating cancer.

If cancer is identified, a number of further tests are needed to detect if it has metastasized.

The tests and procedures which can help in carrying out the diagnosis of colon cancer are as follows:

  • A physical examination
  • A colonoscopy for looking inside the patients rectum
  • A biopsy where the doctor secures a tissue sample from the patient and sends it for analysis in the lab
  • Molecular examination so that particular features of the patients tumour can be identified which might be vital for treatment
  • Imaging tests such as MRI scan, ultrasound, PET or CT scan for checking if cancer has spread
  • A chest X-ray for detecting if cancer has metastasized to the patients lungs as well

After taking all the required tests as mentioned above, there will be a thorough discussion about the colon cancer diagnosis between the patient and the doctor.

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How Long Will A Person With Stage 4 Colon Cancer Live

Stage 4 colon cancer is known to be the most progressive stage or grade of this disorder. At this stage, this disease may also be referred to as metastatic colon cancer. However, first of all, you are required to understand what does stage 4 cancers mean and that not all of them are compulsorily alike. As per the general definition, a stage 4 colon or bowel cancer is that which has progressed or metastasized beyond the colon of the person. There are many various sites to which cancer can spread. Due to this reason, it is considered that all statistics pertaining to late-stage colon cancer survival are prone to be misleading. Each colon cancer is different. The body of every person as well as the general health and the medical conditions of the person has to be different. Therefore, the time period for which a person with colon cancer- stage 4 can live is also different from one individual to another.

Dr Rudra Prasad Acharya, with above 10 years’ experience, can provide the best cancer surgery in Delhi. Check out below everything you need to know about stage 4 colon cancer, its diagnosis, treatment, expectations, and overall outlook.

Cellular Classification Of Colon Cancer

Books For Colon Cancer Batients: Stage 4 Colon Cancer Survival Rate ...

Histologic types of colon cancer include the following:

  • Adenocarcinoma .
  • Neuroendocrine. Tumors with neuroendocrine differentiation typically have a poorer prognosis than pure adenocarcinoma variants.
  • References
  • Saclarides TJ, Szeluga D, Staren ED: Neuroendocrine cancers of the colon and rectum. Results of a ten-year experience. Dis Colon Rectum 37 : 635-42, 1994.
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    When To Stop Treatment

    While we have better treatments than in the past, and sometimes can even treat metastases, we know that many people with stage 4 colon cancer will reach a time at which the risks and side effects of treatment outweigh the benefits.

    The advent of new treatments is a double-edged sword. These newer treatments can extend life and provide options not available just a few short years ago.

    In the past, we often simply ran out of treatments to offer, but today we have reached a point in which the choice to discontinue treatments often needs to be an active decision. If you are at this point in your journey, make sure to ask a lot of questions, and carefully contemplate the answers.

    In addition to having to make decisions about when to stop treatment, people have to learn about and consider taking part in clinical trialssome of which have been changing the outlook for stage 4 colon cancer considerably. It’s important to learn all you can about your cancer.

    What To Expect From Your Doctor

    Some patients seek very limited information about how long they may be able to live with stage 4 colon cancer. Other patients do not prefer to know such information. Even if you desire as many details as possible, do not forget that it cannot be accurately predicted as to how long a person can survive with stage 4 colon cancer.

    You can expect from your doctor to make you aware of a duration of time as he/she predicts you to live. This is the optimum guess for your doctor. It is based on your specific condition and the medical experience of the doctor. Every patient and his/her case are different.

    Apart from that, always keep in mind that situations change. Some colon cancer patients may end up living much longer than the doctors have expected. Other patients might survive for a shorter time than expected. Some doctors may totally avoid giving any predictions regarding how long a patient will survive to have stage 4 colon cancer simply since they may not know.

    The most significant thing to know is that it is up to you to learn as little or as much regarding your prognosis. Only make sure that what you know or not is absolutely clear to and verified by your doctor.

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    Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Life Expectancy

    If you have metastatic colorectal cancer, your life expectancy will vary based on a number of factors, including your stage and type.

    Colorectal cancer can be localized, which means its contained within the rectum or colon or it can be metastatic, meaning it has spread to other parts of the body. If it has reached nearby parts, its known as regional cancer. If the spread is farther way, its known as distant cancer.

    The average five-year survival rate for colon cancer is 72 percent for regional and 14 percent for distant cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. If you have rectal cancer, the five-year survival rate estimate is 73 percent for regional cancer and 17 percent for distant cancer.

    As treatment options improve, so do survival rates. Everyones circumstances are unique, so be sure to discuss your specific situation with your care team.

    Colon Cancer Mutations Targeted By Precision Cancer Medicines

    Patient Survived Stage 4 Colon Cancer, Twice

    Genetic Mutations: Not all colon cancer cells are alike. They may differ from one another based on what genes have mutations. Molecular testing should be performed to test for genetic mutations or the proteins they produce on ALL patients. By testing an individualâs colon cancer for specific unique genomic- biomarkers doctors can offer a personalized treatment approach utilizing precision medicines. Colon cancer mutations are being identified and new medicines developed to target these mutations on an ongoing basis.

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    Can You Live 10 Years With Stage 4 Colon Cancer

    Programs in the United States that provide cancer statistics tend to report 5-year survival rates, not 10-year survival rates.

    According to the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program, the 5-year relative survival rate for people with distant colorectal cancer is . In other words, when compared to people without cancer, people with distant colorectal cancer are 14.7 percent as likely to survive for another 5 years. This statistic is based on people who had cancer between 2011 and 2017.

    Research that looks at survival rates beyond 5 years is lacking.

    An older 2012 study from the Netherlands found that the 10-year survival rate for Dutch people with stage 4 colorectal cancer was 7 percent.

    A 2019 study from Martinique found that the 10-year survival rate for Martiniquans with all stages of colorectal cancer not just stage 4 or distant cancer was 33 percent. This takes into account people diagnosed between 1993 and 2012.

    Keep in mind that survival rates continue to improve over time. In addition, early diagnosis of colon cancer is crucial to an improved life expectancy.

    Treatment Of Older Individuals

    A large percentage of patients with advanced colorectal cancer are 65 years or older. Because elderly patients commonly have concurrent illnesses or other medical difficulties that are perceived to exacerbate the side effects of chemotherapy, elderly patients are often treated with reduced doses of chemotherapy. Clinical studies have shown, however, that elderly patients get the same benefit from chemotherapy treatment as younger patients.

    While a dose reduction or delay may sometimes be necessary, it may also compromise the optimal treatment of some patients. All patients over 65 should be closely monitored for toxic side effects of chemotherapy, especially during their initial chemotherapy administration cycle.

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    Treatment Of Stage Iv

    • Original: Jan 17, 2021

    Colon cancer is classified as stage IV or metastatic when the cancer has spread to distant locations in the body and cannot be primarily treated with surgery this may include the liver, lungs, bones, distant lymph nodes or other sites.

    Patients diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer have an increasing number of treatment options as a result of genomic testing and the development of precision cancer medicines. Some patients may be cured of their cancer, and others can derive significant long-term survival benefit with appropriate sequencing of treatment based on their cancers genomic profile.1 The average survival duration has improved from less than one year to over 3 years and 20% of patients now survive 5 years or longer as a result of the development of more effective systemic therapy.

    Rates For Colon And Rectal Cancer

    Colorectal survival by TNM Stage

    You may hear your doctor talk about a five-year survival rate. Essentially, this number asks, From the time of diagnosis of particular cancer at a particular stage, what percentage of patients are still alive five years later?

    The five-year survival rate for those diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer is about 15%. The five-year survival rate for those diagnosed with stage IV rectal cancer is 16%.

    Note that these percentages apply to prospects for five-year survival at the time a stage of colorectal cancer is diagnosed. From that point, some patients may respond better to treatment, receive better social support, or be more proactive in their treatment . Therefore, a given patient’s prospects of five-year survival may improve or worsen after the diagnosis.

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    Colon And Rectal Cancer Stages

    There are five stages of colorectal cancer, ranging from 0 to 4. Doctors may also follow the stage number with a letter that offers more information.

    Generally, the higher the number and letter, the more advanced the cancer.

    Stage 0 The cancer is in its earliest stage, called carcinoma in situ or intramucosal carcinoma. It has not grown beyond the inner layer of the colon or rectum .

    Stage 1 The cancer has grown into the submucosa, and possibly into the thick muscle layer beneath it . It has not spread to nearby lymph nodes or distant sites .

    Stage 2A The cancer has grown into the wall of the colon or rectum but not through it. It has not reached nearby organs or lymph nodes or spread to distant sites .

    Stage 2B The cancer has grown through the wall of the colon or rectum but not into nearby tissues or organs. It has not spread to nearby lymph nodes or distant sites .

    Stage 2C The cancer has grown through the wall of the colon or rectum and is attached to or has grown into other nearby tissues or organs. It has not spread to nearby lymph nodes or distant sites .

    Stage 3A The cancer has grown into the submucosa and possibly the muscularis propria it has spread to 1 to 3 nearby lymph nodes or into areas of fat near the lymph nodes, but not to distant sites .


    The cancer has grown into the submucosa and spread to 4 to 6 nearby lymph nodes but not to distant sites .





    Stage 4C The cancer has spread to distant parts of the peritoneum .

    Factors Associated With Recurrence

    Diet and exercise

    No prospective randomized trials have demonstrated an improvement in outcome with a specific diet or exercise regimen however, cohort studies suggest that a diet or exercise regimen may improve outcome. The cohort studies contain multiple opportunities for unintended bias, and caution is needed when using the data from them.

    Two prospective observational studies were performed with patients enrolled on the Cancer and Leukemia Group B , which was an adjuvant chemotherapy trial for patients with stage III colon cancer. In this trial, patients in the lowest quintile of the Western dietary pattern compared with those patients in the highest quintile experienced an adjusted hazard ratio for disease-free survival of 3.25 and an OS of 2.32 . Additionally, findings included that stage III colon cancer patients in the highest quintile of dietary glycemic load experienced an adjusted HR for OS of 1.76 compared with those in the lowest quintile. Subsequently, in the Cancer Prevention Study II Nutrition Cohort, among 2,315 participants diagnosed with colorectal cancer, the degree of red and processed meat intake before diagnosis was associated with a higher risk of death , but red meat consumption after diagnosis was not associated with overall mortality.


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    Treatment Of Recurrent Metastatic Colon Cancer

    When colon cancer has returned following initial treatment with surgery, radiation therapy, and/or chemotherapy or has stopped responding to treatment, it is said to be recurrent or relapsed.

    Patients with recurrent colon cancer can be broadly divided into two groups:

    • Those with isolated recurrence of cancer that can be surgically removed or treated with a directed therapy with the goal of cure.
    • Those with more widespread cancer.

    Most patients with recurrent colon cancer have previously been treated and the recurrent cancer has typically become resistant to whatever treatment regimen was initially used. Testing for specific genomic abnormalities of an individual cancer is essential to determine optimal treatment for recurrent disease. Many patients survive for years after developing recurrent cancer as a result of precision cancer medicines being developed to target the specific genomic abnormalities. In addition, participation in a clinical trial if available should be considered.

    Many individuals will not have a specific mutation identified that can be targeted. Treatment of these individuals consists of chemotherapy medications not previously used or participation in a clinical trial.

    Stage Four Colon Cancer Survival Rate And Life Expectancy

    What is the survival rate for colorectal cancer?

    Stage four colon cancer survival rate is too low for five-year life expectancy. Only 20 to 30 percent among patients can survive this high stage of colon cancer. However, it is possible that a colon cancer patient at stage 4 can survive. Finding treatment during the early stage can prevent from suffering stage 4 colon cancer.

    At stage 0 and stage 1, there is a high survival rate since the prognosis is 90 percent or above for a five-year survival rate. Once you reach a stage higher than 1 such as stage 3 and 4, the survival rate becomes less. Stage 4 colon cancer survival rate lowers down to 20 percent. Learning more about stage 4 colon cancer can give you ideas on how to prevent it.

    Colon cancer is a serious disease that primarily affects the lower parts of the digestive system. These include the colon, rectum and appendix. In addition, stage four colon cancer spread to liver. This is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths in the United States and other parts of the Western continents.

    A physician can diagnose a patient and give the right method of treatment based on the stage of the cancer. The most common treatments are through surgery and chemotherapy. The doctor decides what you need to undergo for treatment depending on your situation. Hence, visiting a doctor can help you get cures and find out the survival rate.

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    Stage Iv And Recurrent Colon Cancer Treatment

    In This Section
  • Current Clinical Trials
  • Stage IV colon cancer denotes distant metastatic disease. Treatment of recurrent colon cancer depends on the sites of recurrent disease demonstrable by physical examination and/or radiographic studies. In addition to standard radiographic procedures, radioimmunoscintography may add clinical information that may affect management. Such approaches have not led to improvements in long-term outcome measures such as survival.

    Treatment Options for Stage IV and Recurrent Colon Cancer

    Treatment options for stage IV and recurrent colon cancer include the following:

  • Surgical resection of locally recurrent cancer.
  • Surgical resection and anastomosis or bypass of obstructing or bleeding primary lesions in selected metastatic cases.
  • Resection of liver metastases in selected metastatic patients or ablation in selected patients.
  • Resection of isolated pulmonary or ovarian metastases in selected patients.
  • Palliative radiation therapy.
  • Clinical trials evaluating new drugs and biological therapy.
  • Clinical trials comparing various chemotherapy regimens or biological therapy, alone or in combination.
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