Colon and Rectal Cancer

C. Everett Koop, MD
Time Life Medical
Last Modified: November 1, 2001

Produced by: Time Life Medical
Medical Director: C. Everett Koop, MD
Format: VHS, 30 minutes
Price: $19.95 US
ISBN#: 0761108734

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Time Life Medical, with C. Everett Koop, MD as Medical Director, has developed an extensive series of medical video productions. A booklet is included with each video which includes a summary of key points, glossary of terms, a resource guide, and a personal journal. This video is a very basic introduction to colon and rectal cancer that is geared toward viewers without extensive medical knowledge.

The purpose of this video is to provide a general overview of colorectal cancer and introduce the viewer to treatment and management strategies. The video is separated into four sections dealing with specific issues. The first section explains the risk factors for colorectal cancer, presenting symptoms, and cellular changes with cancer. The second section reviews diagnostic evaluations including sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, and barium enemas'. There is also a discussion of hereditary colorectal cancer and genetic counseling.

The third section discusses treatment and management. Most of the time is spent reviewing the surgical options including the partial colectomy, total colectomy, and colostomy formation. Adjuvant treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy are briefly touched upon. Unfortunately the video does not discuss the role of chemotherapy and radiation therapy preoperatively to allow sphincter preservation surgery (a less radical surgery used to avoid a colostomy) in carcinomas of the rectum. The final section reviews frequently asked questions on colon and rectal. It also gives recommendations on screening of close relatives.

This video is a good introduction to the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of colon and rectal cancer. Concepts are explained without confusing medical jargon. It is easy to understand and is produced to educate those without an extensive medical background. The video does not examine specific issues extensively, but provides the viewer with basic concepts that they can use to understand the diagnosis of colorectal cancer.

From the National Cancer Institute