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Colorectal cancer diagnosed in younger and younger people. Symptoms, causes, preventive examinations

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Colorectal cancer is increasingly being diagnosed in young people, and a significant number of cases are diagnosed only after the disease has already progressed seriously, according to a report by the American Cancer Society (ACS) published on March 1. Experts point out what symptoms you need to watch out for. They also talk about possible reasons for the increase in the number of cases.

According to the data of the World Health Organization (WHOColorectal cancer is the third most common type of cancer in the world, with almost two million cases diagnosed in 2020 alone. It is also the second leading cause of death from cancer, accounting for nearly one million deaths each year. According to data from the World Cancer Research Fund International, in 2020 Poland was ranked seventh in the world in terms of colorectal cancer mortality per 100,000 people. inhabitants – more than 15,000 died from it. people.

SEE ALSO: Today is World Cancer Day. Specialists appeal: Do you want to have a chance to be cured? Get tested

Increasingly, colorectal cancer is diagnosed in young people

Experts from the American Cancer Society are concerned about the fact that patients with this type of cancer are statistically getting younger. “Shockingly, one in five people who will be diagnosed in the near future is under the age of 55, which is quite young for colorectal cancer,” said ACS Director Karen Knudsen. According to American experts in a new report, in USA this year over 19.5 thousand. under 50 will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer and 3,750 young adults will die from the disease. According to them, the percentage of cases among people younger than 55 increased from 11 percent to 11 percent. in 1995 to 20 percent. in 2019.

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– The average age of onset is 67 years, but we observe an increase in the number of cases among young adults in all countries of the world – points out Professor Lucjan Wyrwicz from the National Institute of Oncology in Warsaw. He emphasizes that “in the past, people aged 40-50 were not diagnosed with colorectal cancer, and now such cases happen.”

Doctors do not indicate a clear reason why this is happening. They note, however, that in more than half of the cases of colorectal cancer development, potentially modifiable factors, such as poor diet, lack of physical activity, smoking, alcohol consumption and excessive body weight, played an important role.

SEE ALSO: Doctors encourage anti-cancer prevention. Every third woman reports for cytology under the National Health Fund

Colorectal cancer – what symptoms to watch out for

Early detection of colorectal cancer is crucial to fight the disease and gives patients a better prognosis before the cancer spreads to other organs. Experts emphasize that colorectal cancer spreads slowly, and its symptoms often appear after the disease begins to clearly progress. According to the American Cancer Society, symptoms such as changes in bowel movements, such as frequent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, dark stools, but also cramps, weight loss and excessive fatigue, can be key.

Karen Knudsen from the ACS emphasizes that the best way to detect and treat colorectal cancer early is not to ignore the alarming symptoms, take all possible measures to improve your health and undergo appropriate screening tests.

In Poland, people between 50 and 65 years of age can apply for a colonoscopy without a referral. People from the 40-49 age group can also apply if they had a family member suffering from cancer. From March 1, immunotherapy, which can help patients with colorectal cancer, was added to the list of reimbursed drugs for some patients. According to prof. Wyrwicza is a modern therapy devoid of the side effects of chemotherapy.

SEE ALSO: Kirstie Alley died of colon cancer. How to recognize a disease that has no symptoms for a long time

CBS, American Cancer Society, tvn24.pl

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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