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You’ve Been Diagnosed With Colon Cancer—What’s Next?

Second Opinion DoctorWhether it comes through a routine colonoscopy or because of worrisome symptoms, facing a diagnosis of colon cancer is never easy. You probably have questions about your short-term options and long-term outlook.

Patients who have no symptoms but receive a diagnosis through a screening often feel blindsided, says oncologist Alok Khorana, M.D., Cleveland Clinic’s Director of GI Malignancies. And those whose diagnosis is triggered by symptoms such as gastrointestinal bleeding have their own set of anxieties.

Because most colon cancer isn’t immediately life-threatening, it’s important to develop a precise diagnosis and care plan, Dr. Khorana says.

Ask for a second opinion. And if your hospital offers support and navigation services that go beyond medical treatment, take advantage of them.

Cleveland Clinic experts offer reassurances about the prognosis of this disease — and advice about how you should approach your treatment and long-term care management.