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Colorectal Cancer In Young Adults

Posted on December 21 2011

According to a recent study there has been an alarming increase in cases of colorectal cancer in young adults over the last decade. Increased awareness and screening has helped to combat the disease among the over-50 population, however, in cases of individuals in their 30's and 40's an increase has occurred and has escalated as far as 4% per year. Speculation abounds as to why the diagnosis rates are increasing in this age group, but it is certain that testing is no longer just for the aging population.

An upswing in screenings has allowed for early identification and treatment of individuals over 50, but programs have not focused on screening for colorectal cancer in young adults. Health officials are suggesting physicians and individuals utilize Fecal Occult Blood Tests (FOBT) and other similar screenings earlier and consider the potential for colorectal cancer which is often overlooked in younger patients.

It has been proven that FOB testing increases the chance of early detection of colorectal cancer in young adults and can lead to more effective treatment. As colon cancer is not common among younger adults, this is often a neglected diagnosis, and as a result many identified cancers are in later stages and less treatable. The conclusion is, of course, that screenings should be performed at earlier stages of life, and that cancer should be considered among potential diagnosis if testing is positive.

Reduce your risk of late stage colorectal cancer by working with your physician to test for potential signs of concern. Home use screenings are available in conjunction with laboratory testing to reduce doctor visits and laboratory fees if this is a concern. The cost of late stage diagnosis of colorectal cancer in young adults is much higher than the cost of an FOBT.

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