What increases my risk for rectal cancer?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

Your risk for rectal cancer can stem from genetics or a previous medical condition. Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis can put you at a higher risk or rectal cancer, so be sure to go through rectal cancer screenings recommended by your doctor. A tendency to develop polyps that can lead to rectal cancer can run in families, so tell your doctor if a family member has had either polyps, rectal cancer, or another cancer of the digestive tract. Some environmental factors can increase the risk of rectal cancer, too, such as eating too much fat and not enough fiber, smoking, or drinking too much alcohol.

Continue Learning about Colorectal Cancer

5 Must-Know Facts About Colonoscopies
5 Must-Know Facts About Colonoscopies
If you’re over age 50 and haven’t had a colon cancer check, you’re not alone. A whopping 23 million Americans have never had a proper test for this ki...
Read More
How does a colonoscopy help prevent colorectal cancer?
Univ. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family MedicineUniv. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family Medicine
A colonoscopy helps prevent colorectal cancer by allowing your doctor to see and remove abnormal gro...
More Answers
What do I need to know about caring for someone with rectal cancer?
Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhDDr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Someone with rectal cancer may need a colectomy.A colectomy is major surgery, and someone will need ...
More Answers
What is a proctectomy with colo-anal anastomosis?
Dr. Vincent T DeVita JrDr. Vincent T DeVita Jr
Some stage I and most stage II and III rectal cancers in the middle and lower third of the rectum re...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.