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Let's prevent colon and rectal cancer together!

Colon and rectal cancer (medically known as colorectal cancer) is one of the most common types of cancer. Roughly 9,000 patients are diagnosed here every year, and the death rate is high. On the other hand, a malignant disease that is screened out in the initial stage can be cured in a particularly large proportion. Many of us are familiar with colonoscopy screening and rightly dislike it. But there is another, much more pleasant solution for colorectal cancer screening, namely a simple blood test!

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What is colorectal cancer?

Colorectal cancer, i.e., cancer of the colon and rectum, in most cases develops from benign lesions, so-called polyps. These polyps, also called adenomas, are epithelium-like formations on the inner surface of the intestinal wall: they develop as glandular lesions but do not perform any function.

These do not yet cause symptoms but can already be detected with a suitable screening test. Benign adenomas develop into malignant tumors in approximately 5-10 years.

Predisposing factors and symptoms

The most common factors that predispose to colorectal cancer are a sedentary lifestyle, a diet rich in preservatives and red meat but poor in fiber, smoking, and frequent alcohol consumption, which can also be considered harmful to civilization. In addition, genetic predisposing factors cannot be neglected: in some families, the disease occurs cumulatively.

Symptoms suggestive of colorectal cancer can be painful defecation due to the narrowing of the intestinal canal, abdominal pain, bloating, bleeding in the stool, or the resulting anemia. Intestinal tumors can remain asymptomatic for a long time. The closer the tumor is to the anus, the sooner symptoms will appear.

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Free-circulating DNA in cancer screening

Freely circulating DNA ( cell free - cfDNA ) covers fragments of the chain that carries our genetic information, which end up in body fluids in different ways, for example through the destruction of our cells or active excretion. In the case of cancer, the concentration of free DNA in body fluids increases significantly.

Their analysis using liquid biopsy methods is a revolutionary technology for cancer screening, as it can provide important information regarding the risk of the presence of the disease and the extent of the risk. Today, we know the gene regions that can be analyzed to detect colorectal cancer with extremely high sensitivity: moreover, with the help of a simple blood test, without the use of a colonoscopy or other invasive procedure!

Basics and benefits of the ColonAiQ genetic test

ColonAiQ is a blood-based multigene methylation test. It examines the biochemical modification, i.e., methylation, of five regions of four genes associated with colorectal cancer on free DNA extracted from a blood sample.

Our body can turn certain genes on and off with the help of methylation, but in the case of cancer, these processes are pathological. Since the appearance of abnormal methylation patterns precedes the malignant changes of the cells or the advanced state with symptoms, their examination is an effective method for preventive cancer screening or for examining the recurrence of the disease.

Thanks to the comprehensive examination, the ColonAiQ test infers the presence of colorectal cancer with extremely high accuracy and sensitivity. Still, it can even detect polyps, which would have turned into a malignant tumor over the years.

The test's specificity is 91.6%, and its sensitivity is 86.1%, far surpassing similar tests (e.g. FIT, CEA). The ColonAiQ test can also assess the risk of recurrence and metastasis after radical removal of colorectal cancer.

Why is the ColonAiQ test recommended?

Regular colorectal cancer screening is recommended for everyone over the age of fifty (or even forty). This is especially true in the case of chronic diseases and a lifestyle predisposing to colorectal cancer or if this disease has already occurred in the family.

Early-stage and advanced adenomas do not cause any symptoms, so the only way to prevent them is through regular screening. The tumor's extent determines the disease's curability: in the initial stage, this is up to 90%; in the case of nearby metastasis, 71%, but in the case of distant metastasis, it is only 10-20%.

The molecular diagnostic process with the test is completely safe, requiring only 8 ml of blood. Sampling is simple, does not require special preparation, and can be done at any time of the day.

As a cooperating partner of Clinomics Europe Kft., you can be one of the first in Hungary to use the ColonAiQ test at Visegrádi40 Private Practice.

Don't put off screening!

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