Cases of colon cancer in young patients are on the rise, according to a new report from the American Cancer Society. The report found that the incidence of colorectal cancer in people under the age of 50 has increased by 2.2% per year since the mid-1990s.
This trend is concerning, as colorectal cancer is typically thought of as a disease that affects older individuals. In fact, the report found that the rate of colorectal cancer in people over the age of 50 has been declining over the same time period.
The rise in cases among young people is particularly alarming, as they are typically not screened for colon cancer until they reach the age of 50. This means that many cases may go undiagnosed until they have progressed to a more advanced stage.
Experts are still trying to understand why colon cancer rates are increasing among younger adults. Some believe that lifestyle factors, such as diet and exercise, may be playing a role. Others speculate that environmental factors or genetic mutations may be contributing to the trend.
Regardless of the cause, healthcare providers are urging young adults to pay attention to their symptoms and to get screened for colon cancer if they have a family history of the disease. Symptoms may include changes in bowel habits, abdominal pain, and rectal bleeding.
Doctors also recommend that young adults adopt a healthy lifestyle, which may reduce their risk of developing colon cancer. This includes eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
The increase in colon cancer rates among young people has led some healthcare providers to call for changes in screening guidelines. Currently, the American Cancer Society recommends that individuals begin screening for colon cancer at age 45. However, some experts believe that screening should begin even earlier for certain high-risk groups.
As research on colon cancer continues, healthcare providers are working to raise awareness about the disease and encourage young adults to take their health seriously. By adopting a healthy lifestyle and being aware of their risk factors, young adults may be able to reduce their risk of developing this deadly disease.
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