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Colon Cancer

The wall of the colon is made up of layers of tissue. Colon cancer occurs when abnormal cells form in the inner layer of this tissue. The cancer can grow through some or all of the other layers. The stage (extent) of the cancer depends to a great degree on how deep the cancer goes into these layers.

Because the majority of colon cancers begin as precancerous polyps, colon cancer is a potentially preventable disease. Screening and early detection can catch colon cancer at an early stage or before polyps turn into cancer. Colonoscopy is a screen test for colon cancer and is considered the most reliable means for early detection.

Cancer of the colon is rare in developing countries, but more common in Western societies. In the U.S. alone, colorectal cancer is the fourth most common cancer in men and women.1


  1. What You Need To Know About Cancer of the Colon and Rectum; National Cancer Institute. Available from: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/wyntk/colon-and-rectal

All surgery presents risk, including da Vinci Surgery. Results, including cosmetic results, may vary. Serious complications may occur in any surgery, up to and including death. Examples of serious and life-threatening complications, which may require hospitalization, include injury to tissues or organs; bleeding; infection, and internal scarring that can cause long-lasting dysfunction or pain. Temporary pain or nerve injury has been linked to the inverted position often used during abdominal and pelvic surgery. Patients should understand that risks of surgery include potential for human error and potential for equipment failure. Risk specific to minimally invasive surgery may include: a longer operative time; the need to convert the procedure to an open approach; or the need for additional or larger incision sites. Converting the procedure to open could mean a longer operative time, long time under anesthesia, and could lead to increased complications. Research suggests that there may be an increased risk of incision-site hernia with single-incision surgery. Patients who bleed easily, have abnormal blood clotting, are pregnant or morbidly obese are typically not candidates for minimally invasive surgery, including da Vinci Surgery. Other surgical approaches are available. Patients should review the risks associated with all surgical approaches. They should talk to their doctors about their surgical experience and to decide if da Vinci is right for them. For more complete information on surgical risks, safety and indications for use, please refer to http://www.davincisurgery.com/da-vinci-surgery/safety-information.php.

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PN 1002256 Rev A 04/2013

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