What is colon cancer?: Common signs, symptoms of LA Tenorio’s health condition

March 22, 2023 - 7:27 PM
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PBA Media Bureau

A doctor talked about the signs and symptoms of colon cancer after a veteran basketball player was diagnosed with this severe medical condition.

LA Tenorio of Barangay Ginebra on Tuesday revealed that he is dealing with stage three colon cancer. This led him to miss his first game at the PBA Governor’s Cup.

Tenorio previously said that he ended his 17-year streak playing in the PBA because of a groin injury.

In a new statement, however, the player revealed that he was diagnosed with stage three colon cancer, which is the second to the last stage of the chronic illness.

“I was recently diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer. The initial testing three weeks ago led me to instantly miss practices and games. I [completed] my surgery last week and will soon undergo treatment for the next few months,” Tenorio said.

The PBA champion also assured his fans that he is not yet retiring from the sport.

“I am not yet retiring from the game I love, and with the help of the best doctors in the Philippines and Singapore, I BELIEVE I can touch a basketball once more and return stronger,” LA said.

His fans soon poured Tenorio with messages of hopes and prayers for his recovery.

READ: ‘Bound to end’: LA Tenorio pens letter after streak ends at 744 games | ‘Never say die’: Basketball community rally behind LA Tenorio amid cancer bout 

Some Filipinos, meanwhile, raised concerns about this type of cancer and its signs and symptoms.

Tony Leachon, former consultant for National Task Force against COVID-19, provided his followers with an overview of colon cancer on his Facebook account.

Leachon cited the information he posted from a medical website named Mayo Clinic.

“It’s time to check on our health!” he said.

Leachon also listed the following common symptoms of this deadly disease:

  • A persistent change in your bowel habits, including diarrhea or constipation or a change in the consistency of your stool
  • Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool
  • Persistent abdominal discomforts, such as cramps, gas or pain
  • A feeling that your bowel doesn’t empty completely
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Unexplained weight loss

Cancer of the digestive tract

Mayo Clinic explained that as its name suggests, colon cancer begins in the large intestine (colon), which is the last stop of the digestive tract.

While it normally affects older adults, this cancer can happen to any individual regardless of age.

Before developing into a disease, noncancerous clumps of cells called polyps first appear inside the colon.

“Polyps may be small and produce few if any, symptoms. For this reason, doctors recommend regular screening tests to help prevent colon cancer by identifying and removing polyps before they turn into cancer,” Mayo Clinic said.

Over time, the polyps turn into or develop into colon cancers.

There are four stages of colon cancer.

In the third stage, the American Cancer Society said that the polyps have already spread to nearby lymph nodes.

They have not yet, however, affected other parts of the body.

“Surgery to remove the section of the colon with [cancer] (partial colectomy) along with nearby lymph nodes, followed by adjuvant chemo is the standard treatment for this stage,” the organization said.

In a report on March 17, National Geographic said that some doctors in the United States were detecting cases of colon cancer among adults younger than 55 years old.

Environmental and genetic factors are seen as possible reasons for the concerning trend.