Colon and Rectal Cancer Among Young Adults on the Rise

Did you know?  After accounting for age, people born in 1990 are

2x’s more likely to have colon cancer,4x’s more likely to have rectal cancer

compared to people born around 1950.

What is the cause of this rise?

For most young adults, colon and rectal cancer is not on their radar because many believe it is a disease that occurs only in older adults.colon and rectal cancer While it is true that colon and rectal cancer occur far more often in adults 50 years and older, it can occur in young people too. In the US, among young and middle age adults, the incidence of colon and rectal cancer has been steadily climbing at a rate of 2% per year from 1992 to 2013, while the overall incidence has declined. In particular, rectal cancer has been driving this increase seen in young adults. Researcher are not certain what is causing the increasing incidence of colon and rectal cancer in younger adults. However, they believe that it is likely related to obesity, sedentary lifestyle, and eating an unhealthy diet.

What are some possible symptoms of colon and rectal cancer?

The most common symptoms of colon and rectal cancer include:

  • a change in bowel habits that occur for more than a few days
  • rectal bleeding or blood in the stool
  • abdominal pain
  • weakness or fatigue
  • unintentional weight loss

If you have concerns, it is important that you discuss your symptoms with a doctor and not ignore them.

For more information on colon and rectal cancer, please contact Dr. Anubha Sinha at Hunterdon Digestive Health Specialists with locations in Flemington and Hillsborough, NJ. Call (908) 788-8200 to schedule your appointment with Dr. Sinha at either location today!

*The above facts are based on published data from UpToDate and the American Cancer Society. 

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