Anal canal is the lowest part of your gastrointestinal tract, which stores stool and evacuates it during bowel movements.
A bunch of muscle cells, known as sphincter, may contract and relax, controlling defecation.
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The inner layer of the rectum is made of the glandular cells, which produce mucus to help remove all waste away from your body.
Genetic mutations can sometimes turn healthy anal cells into the abnormal deathless cells that grow and divide out of the body's control. With time, these abnormal components can form a tumor.
If mutant cells travel from their primary location to the distant organs and tissues, this means that cancerous cells metastasize.
Anal cancer is a relatively rare trouble, which affects more than 8500 Americans each year.
However today number of new cases is rising, according to statistics of the American Cancer Society.
In most cases, anal malignancy develops in people after the age of 50. It's especially common problem among those, who live with human papillomavirus infection and immunodeficiency.
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Having high number of sexual partners and engaging in anal sex can significantly increase your risks for developing anal cancer.
Smoking and high-fat diet were found to play a role too, especially for people with family or individual history of cancer.
A big problem is that anal cancer can grow in person's body, without causing any symptoms or can look like hemorrhoids and irritable bowel syndrome.
Be aware that these symptoms may indicate anal neoplasm:
#1. Rectal bleeding – nearly 80% of patients with anal cancer have this symptom. If you've noticed red blood on the toilet paper or in the stool, it's worth consulting with medical professional.
#2. Lumps in the anal canal – new lump, developed anywhere on the body, is commonly a thing to be aware about. New mass, found in the anal area, may be caused not only by hemorrhoids, but also by cancer.
#3. Feeling incomplete evacuation – sometimes rectal lump grows large enough to block stool passage, causing constipation and sense of fullness even after having bowel movements.
#4. Anal itching – it may be extremely embarrassing, when you feel unbearable urge to scratch the bottom. But what if it’s a sign of cancer?
#5. Passing narrow stool – when cancerous mass obstructs anal canal, stool may go out in pencil-thin elements.
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#6. Bloating – that’s right, abdominal bloating may be caused by numerous reasons. In anal cancer, rectal blockage and incomplete evacuation usually results in belly pain, cramping and fullness.
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