Aim-Background: The aim of this study was to examine the symptomatology and the staging status of patients with colorectal cancer (CRC) at the time of diagnosis, and the type of surgical treatment.
Methods: The hospital records were studied retrospectively of 249 patients with CRC who had undergone a surgical procedure with curative intent in a 7-year period, in the 4th Surgical Department, G. Papanicolaou Hospital Thessaloniki and the 1st Surgical Department, 401 Army General Hospital Athens,. The patients were divided into two groups, according to the location of their tumor (colon and rectum), and the results were compared with cancer databases of developed countries.
Results: Abdominal pain was the most common presenting symptom (29.1% of cases) for right-sided CRC, and a change in bowel habits for left-sided CRC. In this series, 27.7% of the patients were admitted as surgical emergencies, while only 4.8% of the malignancies had been detected by screening. The surgical procedure varied, depending on the location and the stage of the tumor. According to histopathological examination of the resected specimens, 5 patients (2%) were diagnosed at stage 0,45 (18.1%) at stage I, 83 (33.3%) at stage II, 95 (38.2%) at stage III, and 21 (8.4%) at stage IV CRC.
Conclusions: The demographic and clinical characteristics of the patients in this series were in agreement with the current bibliographical evidence. Further interpretation of the results highlights the need for increased participation in screening programs, the creation of specialized cancer centers of excellence and the establishment of a national cancer database, in order to improve the early diagnosis and treatment of CRC.
Colorectal cancer stage diagnosis symptoms surgical treatment
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