Appendix Cancer: Types, Categories, Symptoms, and Treatment
Your appendix is a small tube-shaped sac that connects to your colon near the beginning of your large intestine. The purpose of your appendix is still unclear, but some scientists think it may be part of your immune system.
Appendix cancer is sometimes called appendiceal cancer. It occurs when healthy cells become abnormal and grow rapidly. These cancerous cells form a lump or tumor within the appendix, which is usually found by accident after surgical removal of the appendix.
Appendix cancer is considered rare. In the United States, it affects about one or two million people each year, according to the National Cancer InstituteTrusted Source.
In this article, we review the different types and stages of appendix cancer, as well as the symptoms, risk factors, and treatment options.
What are the types of appendix cancer?
There are several stages of appendix cancer, but they are not well defined. That is due to the unavailability of this type of cancer, which limits the amount of research.
The stages of appendix cancer are as follows:
In this type, sometimes known as the normal carcinoid, the tumor forms certain cells in the intestinal wall.
It is about half the most trusted of all appendix cancers. It can metastasize, or spread, but can be successfully treated with surgery.
Mucinous adenocarcinoma of the appendix
The mucinous adenocarcinoma of the appendix, also known as MAA, occurs in both women and men. The average age of the year is about 60 Reliable Source. No known hazards are known in its development. Cancer cells produce a gel-like substance called mucin that can spread cancer to other organs.
Most of the time, MAA is found after a tumor rupture leading to the release of mucin.
This type of cancer causes 10% of appendix cancer and does the same with colorectal cancer. It usually occurs in people between the ages of 62 and 65Trusted Source and is more common in men than women.
Colon adenocarcinoma usually begins at the bottom of your appendix.
Goblet cell adenocarcinoma
The goblet cell carcinoid is also called GCC. It grows on both neuroendocrine cells and a type of epithelial cell called goblet cells that produce a jelly-like substance called mucin.
GCC usually begins between the ages of 50 and 55. Usually, it causes appendicitis or abdominal pain.
Signet ring cell adenocarcinoma
Signet ring cell adenocarcinoma is considered a subtype of colonic-type adenocarcinoma or mucinous adenocarcinoma.
Although it is a very aggressive type and may spread to other parts of the body, it is extremely rare. This type usually appears in the colon or abdomen but can also grow in the appendix.
What are the symptoms of appendix cancer?
More than half of the people who are trusted to have appendix cancer have no symptoms. It is usually found during surgery or imaging tests for another condition such as appendicitis.
Your doctor may also diagnose you during a routine colonoscopy. However, if there are symptoms, they may include:
- bloated stomach
- ovarian mass
- chronic or severe abdominal pain
- indirect discomfort below the right abdomen
- changes in bowel function (such as constipation, constipation, diarrhea)
Many of these symptoms may not occur until the cancer is advanced. In about one-third of cases in the Reliable Source, cancer has already spread to distant parts of your body at the time of diagnosis.
What are the stages and marks of appendix cancer?
Doctors often use the TNM stage program to describe the level of appendix cancer. TNM stands for
The plant. The level of cancer in your appendix.
Node. That cancer has reached your lymph nodes.
Metastasis. That cancer has spread beyond your pancreas.
Each of the three parts of the tumor is organized and plays a role in determining the stage of cancer.
The size and location of the appendiceal plant are given points from T0 to T4b:
|T0||No evidence of cancer|
|This||Evidence of cancer in situ, or cancer cells in the first layer of your appendix|
|T1||Evidence of cancer cells in the next layer of your appendix called the submucosa|
|T2||Cancer has entered a deep layer of your appendix called the muscularis propria|
|T3||Cancer has spread into a layer of connective tissue called the subserosa of the blood supply of your appendix called the mesoappendix|
|T4||Cancer has grown into the lining of your abdominal cavity or nearby organs|
|T4a||Evidence of the tumor in the visceral peritoneum, the tissue that covers the outer surface of most organs|
|T4b||Cancer is present in other organs or structures such as your colon|
The extent to which your cancer has affected the lymph nodes is given points from N0 to N2:
|N0||No cancer in surrounding lymph nodes|
|N1||Cancer is in 1 to 3 lymph nodes in the area|
|N2||Cancer is in 4 or more lymph nodes in the area|
The extent to which cancer has spread to other parts of your body is rated from M0 to M1c:
|M0||Cancer has not spread to other parts of your body|
|M1||Cancer has spread to other parts of your body|
|M1a||It has spread to a particular region called the intraperitoneal acellular mucin|
|M1b||It has spread within the peritoneum further than stage M1a|
|M1c||It has spread beyond the peritoneum|
Doctors give a distance to your cancer based on how the cancer cells differ from healthy cells under a microscope. High-grade cancer is expected to spread rapidly.
Appendiceal cancer is given a range from G1 to g4:
|G1||Tumor cells look similar to healthy cells|
|G2||Tumor cells look fairly different from healthy cells|
|G3||Tumor cells look very different from healthy cells|
|G4||The tumor cells look distinct compared to healthy cells|
TNM stage program
Doctors give a complete diagnosis of your cancer based on TNM and grade points. The upper bouts featured two cutaways, for easier access to the higher frets.
The table below shows the stage of appendiceal carcinomas. It is noteworthy that the stage definitions of other types of appendix cancer – such as the neuroendocrine appendix – are slightly different.
|Stage 0||Tis + N0 + M0|
|Stage 1||T1 or T2 + N0 + M0|
|Stage 2A||T3 + N0 + M0|
|Stage 2B||T4a + N0 + M0|
|Stage 2C||T4b + N0 + M0|
|Stage 3A||T1 or T2 + N1 + M0|
|Stage 3B||T3 or T4 + N1 + M0|
|Stage 3C||Any T + N2 + M0|
|Stage 4A||Any T + N0 + M1a or any T + any N + M1b + G1|
|Stage 4B||Any T + any N + M1b + G2 or G3|
|Stage 4C||Any T + any N + M1c + any G|
What are the risk factors for appendix cancer?
The cause of appendix cancer is less well known and no potentially harmful risk factors have been identified. However, appendix cancer is usually progressive and rare in children.
Neuroendocrine tumors are more common in women than men.
Although further research is needed, several potential risk factors have been suggested by experts, including:
- Severe anemia, vitamin B12 deficiency
- atrophic gastritis, or chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract
- Zollinger-Ellison syndrome, a condition of the digestive system
- family history of multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1), a disorder that leads to hormone-producing streams.
What are the treatments for appendix cancer?
Treatment of appendix cancer depends on:
- type of plant
- stage of cancer
- human life as a whole
A multidisciplinary team of medical professionals will assist you with your treatment.
Your team will include a variety of professionals who may including doctors, nurses, dietitians, counselors, and more. A type of doctor called a surgical oncologist will work on your cancer while a medical oncologist will improve your chemotherapy system.
Surgery is the most common treatment for local appendix cancer. If the cancer is found only in the appendix, the treatment is usually to remove the appendix. This is also called an appendectomy.
In some types of appendix cancer, or if the tumor is large, your doctor may recommend the removal of one part of your colon and lymph nodes. Surgery to remove part of your colon is called a hemicolectomy.
Once cancer has spread, your doctor may recommend cytoreductive surgery, also called debulking. In this type of surgery, the surgeon will remove the tumor, the surrounding fluid, and possibly any nearby adhesive tissue.
Treatment may include chemotherapy before or after surgery if:
- the plant is larger than 2 inches
- cancer has spread, especially to the lymph nodes
- cancer is strong
Types of chemotherapy include:
- systemic chemotherapy is given intravenously or orally
- regional chemotherapy is given directly to the abdomen, such as intraperitoneal chemotherapy (EPIC) or hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC)
- a combination of systemic and regional chemotherapies
Radiation therapy is rarely used to treat appendix cancer. However, it may be recommended that your cancer spread to other parts of the body.
After surgery, your doctor will follow an imaging test, such as a CT scan or MRI, to confirm the tumor.
What is the rate of recurrence and survival of appendix cancer?
Since appendix cancer is a rare condition, little information is available about its recurrence or survival rates.
According to the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the 5-year survival rate for Grade 1 and Grade 2 neuroendocrine tumors is between 67 and 97 percent. The survival rate of appendix cancer that has spread to other parts of the body is low.
Survival rates also vary between types of cancer. Neuroendocrine tumors have a very high chance of survival while signal cell tumors have a very low survival rate of five years at 27 percent.
Survival rate and visual acuity are generally good for most people with first-line appendix cancer.
In most cases, appendix cancer does not appear until appendectomy is performed for other reasons.
After any cancer diagnosis, it is important to follow up with your doctor regularly to make sure you do not come back.
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