Bowel cancer, also known as colorectal cancer, can affect any part of the large bowel (colon) or rectum. Most bowel cancers develop from the inner lining of the bowel, and usually start with growths called polyps. These polyps are benign growths and are usually harmless, however they can turn into a cancerous tumour if left undetected.
Bowel cancer may also be called colon cancer or rectal cancer, depending on where the cancer is located and begins.
Bowel cancer is the second most common cancer in both men and women in Australia and is more common in people over the age of 50.