Colon Cancer is becoming more common for individuals in their 30s and even their 20s. In a broader view, for people under 50, colorectal cancer rates have risen 50 percent.
Is this reason to be worried? Certainly in a larger, epidemiological sense. But if you’re in your 20s and 30s and worried about cancer, then you can probably rest easy.
Recommendations of the American Cancer Society
Current recommendations of having yourself screened for colon cancer are for individuals 50 and above. The truth is, for individuals below this age, there simply is not a high occurrence of colon cancer.
More than 90 percent of colon cancer cases come from individuals 50 and above.
But, of all the remaining cases, over 40 percent are from individuals aged 45 to 49. Hence why the ACS is considering lowering its age range for colorectal cancer screening to 45 to 49, which would cover 22 million more Americans.
The Strategy for Catching More Cases of Colon Cancer
The fact is, all medical systems must make the best use of their limited resources. Hence, we can’t simply screen every individual for every possible disease.
In the case of colon cancer, however, many thousands of lives more might be saved. The ACS estimates over 16,000 cases of colon cancer will be diagnosed in Americans under 50 in just one year.
How do they plan to go about catching these cases? They won’t recommend everyone go for the more extensive colonoscopy, but will offer 6 full options of screening. Colonoscopies are the most thorough and the most accurate–but if you’re under 50, then a simple examination of a stool sample would suffice for screening.
Overall, the ACS hopes casting a wider net can lead to many saved lives in the long run.
Are you between the ages of 45 and 49? Want to know more about colon cancer? Call Gentle Wellness Center today to schedule a consultation.