Cancer of the colon and rectum is the third most common cause of cancer in the U.S. It affects roughly 140,000 men and women every year. It is a highly preventable cancer.
Colorectal cancer most often begins as a polyp, a noncancerous growth that may develop on the inner wall of the colon or rectum, as people get older. If not treated or removed, a polyp can become a potentially life-threatening cancer. Recognizing and removing precancerous polyps can prevent colorectal cancer.