The role of blood tests in colorectal cancer treatment

The role of blood tests in colorectal cancer treatment

Colorectal cancer remains a significant global health concern, impacting millions of lives each year. As medical innovations continue to revolutionize the landscape of cancer diagnosis and treatment, blood tests have emerged as a crucial tool in the arsenal against colorectal cancer.

In this blog post, we delve into the transformative role of blood tests in colorectal cancer care, exploring the disease’s overview, risk factors, common symptoms, preventive measures, and the pivotal role of MediGroup’s connection building and contract negotiations in helping practices find service providers for detecting and treating colorectal cancer.

Overview of Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is a type of cancer that originates in the colon or rectum, forming abnormal growths called polyps. Over time, these polyps can develop into cancerous tumors, posing a serious threat to an individual’s health. Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer globally, with both men and women at risk, and its incidence increases with age.

Factors That Heighten the Risk

Several factors contribute to an increased risk of developing colorectal cancer. Age is a significant factor, as the risk rises substantially after the age of 50. A family history of colorectal cancer or certain genetic conditions, such as Lynch syndrome or familial adenomatous polyposis, can also increase susceptibility. Lifestyle factors, such as a diet high in red and processed meats, a lack of physical activity, smoking, and excessive alcohol consumption, play a role in increasing the risk of colorectal cancer.

Common Symptoms and Tips for Prevention

Colorectal cancer often presents with subtle symptoms, making early detection challenging. Key signs to be aware of include:

  • Changes in bowel habits
  • Blood in stool
  • Abdominal pain
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Fatigue

To reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, individuals are advised to adopt a healthy lifestyle. This includes:

  • Maintaining a balanced diet rich in fiber
  • Engaging in regular physical activity
  • Limiting alcohol intake
  • Avoiding tobacco products
  • Undergoing regular screenings, especially for those with risk factors.

General Information about Blood Tests for Cancer

Blood tests have revolutionized the landscape of cancer diagnosis, offering a non-invasive and efficient method for detecting the presence of cancerous cells or biomarkers in the bloodstream. These tests, known as liquid biopsies, provide valuable insights into the molecular and genetic makeup of tumors, helping with personalized treatment approaches.

The Crucial Role of Blood Tests in Colorectal Cancer Treatment

When we are talking about colorectal cancer, blood tests have become instrumental in both early detection and treatment monitoring. These tests can identify specific biomarkers associated with colorectal cancer, allowing for a more targeted and personalized approach to treatment. Moreover, they enable clinicians to assess the effectiveness of ongoing therapies, making adjustments as needed to optimize patient outcomes.

Detecting colorectal cancer through blood tests

One of the key advantages of blood tests in colorectal cancer care is their ability to detect the disease at an early stage, often before symptoms manifest. Traditional screening methods, such as colonoscopies, are invasive and may not be suitable for everyone. Blood tests offer a less intrusive alternative, providing a convenient and accessible means of monitoring colorectal health.

Monitoring treatment efficacy

Blood tests play a pivotal role in monitoring the progress of colorectal cancer treatment. By regularly assessing specific biomarkers in the bloodstream, healthcare providers can gauge the effectiveness of the chosen therapeutic interventions. This real-time feedback allows for prompt adjustments to treatment plans, ensuring that patients receive the most effective care tailored to their individual needs.

Contribution to precision medicine

Colorectal cancer is a heterogeneous disease, meaning that different patients may have unique genetic profiles driving their cancer. Blood tests contribute to precision medicine by identifying specific mutations or genetic alterations in the tumor DNA. This information enables oncologists to prescribe targeted therapies that address the molecular characteristics of an individual’s cancer, maximizing treatment efficacy while minimizing side effects.

Early Detection with Veridian Medical’s ForSure™ iFOBT

One of MediGroup’s vendors is Veridian Medical, experts in fecal immunochemical tests. Veridian Medical’s ForSure™ iFOBT is a rapid, qualitative immunoassay test designed to detect fecal occult blood (FOB) in feces, aiding in the timely detection of colorectal cancer and other gastrointestinal conditions. This test is simple, effective, and fast, facilitating the diagnosis of colorectal cancer and identifying conditions associated with the gastrointestinal tract.

It aligns with the American College of Gastroenterology’s (ACG) updated recommendation of starting screening at age 45, recognizing the increasing incidence of colorectal cancer in younger adults. The test offers efficiency, is FDA-approved and CLIA-WAIVED, has 98% sensitivity and 96% specificity, and a 51% detection rate for precancerous adenomas. It is user-friendly, has built-in internal controls, and has assigned CPT codes to streamline billing for healthcare providers.


In conclusion, blood tests have transformed the landscape of colorectal cancer care, offering a non-invasive and personalized approach to detection and treatment. These tests, with their ability to identify specific biomarkers and monitor treatment efficacy, play a crucial role in enhancing patient outcomes.

As technology continues to advance, blood tests for colorectal cancer are likely to become even more refined, paving the way for improved early detection and more effective therapeutic interventions. Embracing the power of blood tests is a significant step towards a future where colorectal cancer is not just treatable but preventable, saving lives and improving the quality of life for those affected by this formidable disease. Contact MediGroup today and let our contract negotiation services help you in your efforts to help others!


MediGroup is The Leader in Focused Group Purchasing

Contact Us