Colorectal Cancer Survivors May Face Risk Of Second Cancer

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People who have survived colorectal cancer may face a higher risk of developing cancer again, according to a new study.

Researchers from the University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center found that colorectal cancer survivors have a 15 percent increased risk of a second cancer.

"In the long term, these findings may be useful in guiding strategies for cancer screening and surveillance after a first colorectal cancer diagnosis," study researcher Amanda Phipps, Ph.D., MPH, said in a statement.

The study, published online in the journal CANCER, included data from people diagnosed with colorectal cancer who were part of 12 Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results cancer registries between 1992 and 2009.

Researchers found that people whose colorectal cancer tumors were in the transverse to descending parts of the colon had a particularly high risk -- 30 percent higher -- for developing another kind of cancer again later on, as well as two- to three-fold increased risk for developing colorectal cancer again.

And the risk of going on to develop small intestinal cancer was particularly high among those who had survived colorectal cancer; they had a more than four-fold higher risk of this cancer, versus the general population.

Colorectal cancer survivors aren't the only one who face higher risks of second cancers later on. WebMD reported back in 2005 on a study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, which showed that testicular cancer survivors have higher risks of developing cancer elsewhere on their bodies, particularly if they initially developed testicular cancer earlier in life.

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