Can Colon Cancer Cause High Blood Pressure?

When it comes to the issue of colon cancer, the stage of the cancer is the major concern since it plays a key role for the prognosis of the problem. The mortality rate from this cancer is pretty high. Therefore, the treatment is necessary. At advanced stages, colon cancer can affects other parts of the body, causing some complications. An interesting question, can it also cause high blood pressure (hypertension)?

The function of kidneys can affect your blood pressure!

Kidneys are important to clean blood by filtering it. They have lots of capillaries to filter blood.

The essential substances will be absorbed back to the bloodstream. And the wastes and any bad things that are not required by the body will be removed through urine. So your kidneys are also essential organs of your urinary system.

image_illustration362The problem comes when the blood vessels that run from the heart to the kidneys (renal arteries) get narrowed. The narrowing of one or both renal arteries can affect the way of delivering blood to the kidneys. There are several causes. But mostly, it occurs due to atherosclerosis.

When the blood flow from the heart to the kidneys doesn’t run as usual as it should, the kidneys can stimulate certain hormones which then may lead to high blood pressure.

For instance, if the blood-flow to the kidneys is lower than usual, they respond it for dehydration. As a result, some hormones will be released to retain more water and sodium. And then the body fills with more additional sodium and fluid, increasing the blood pressure.

Colon cancer may affect kidneys for several reasons

Kidneys are pretty close to the colon. Depending on where the cancer occurs in the colon, it can grow and become large enough to put more pressure to the kidneys (including blood vessels that line from the heart to the kidneys).

The chance for the cancer to affect kidneys increases when it grows in the upper part of the colon. Because the kidneys are closer to the upper part of colon! For in-depth information about the link between colon cancers and kidney problems, see this post!

Furthermore, cells of cancer in the colon can travel through bloodstream and lymph systems. They can spread to other parts of the body, including to the kidneys (causing secondary kidney cancer).

When they do have spread to the kidneys and caused a secondary cancerous tumor in there, hypertension can be one of the symptoms (typically followed with anemia, lack of red blood cells). Other symptoms may include:

  1. Unintended weight loss with unknown reason.
  2. Change in appetite (loss of appetite).
  3. Weakness or tiredness.
  4. Heavy sweating, it may be followed with high fever.
  5. Pain in the particular area, especially below the ribs.
  6. General feeling of sickness (poor health).

Although colon cancer has a chance to cause an effect on the kidneys, but this is quite rare. Moreover, the metastasis of this cancer usually spread to the liver and lungs. In other words, colon cancer may be less likely to cause high blood pressure with this way.

Colon cancer treatments and the risk of hypertension

In many cases, colon cancer is a slowly cancerous tumor (see more in here). However, the treatment is usually necessary. Watchful waiting is rarely suggested. Moreover, treating it as early as possible can provide better prognosis for patient, as noted before!

While the treatment is necessary, this cancer and its treatments are a lot to cope with. Each treatment carries side effects. However, each treatment for colon cancer should outweigh the risk of complications.

Chemotherapy is one of the treatment options. And some types of chemo medicines have potential risk to cause high blood pressure.

For instance, the use of angiogenesis inhibitors is pretty common for colon cancer. And this kind of chemotherapy has been linked to hypertension.

High blood pressure is a common risk factor for many heart problems. Fortunately, heart diseases linked to chemotherapy is quite rare.

It seems that colon cancer tends to cause high blood pressure indirectly. If you’re in-doubt to any mediation you are taking, talk to your doctor!

The good news, high blood pressure is controllable. There are plenty of options to manage it. See also the most effective ways of home remedies to treat hypertension in this section!