Colorectal Cancer Increasing In Young Adults

Colorectal Polyps and Cancer

The death toll from this cancer is 50,000 every year. Although scientists aren’t sure why this cancer is attacking more of the younger generation they do have a few suspicions. Study says colorectal cancer increasing in young adults by 2 percent each year in certain groups. Figures Among the Young Adults Even though colorectal cancer over-all has been on the decline, they attribute this fact to more widespread screening. If they can find the cancer early enough, they can treat it successfully. For white men ages 20 to 49, there were 8.4 cases out of 100,000 people diagnosed with colorectal cancer during the years of 1992 to 1995. They did the study again in the years 2002 to 2005 and found that the rate had risen to 10.2. This is a 21 percent increase in a ten-year period. They conducted the same study on women ages 20 to 49. In the years 1992 to 1995, the rate was 6.9. They did the study again in the years of 2002 to 2005 and those numbers had risen to 8.8, which mean a 28 percent increase. They did the same sturdy with Latinos. The increase was 33 percent for men, but not statistically significant for women. There was no increase for African-Americans, but unfortunately, this group of 20 to 49-year-old men and women has a higher risk.

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Previous studies have made the connection between obesity and colon cancer, a link recognized by the US National Cancer Institute. But the current study, which appeared in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, is the first to point to a higher risk of colon polyps – also known as adenomas – in heavy people. “Because there is a known association between obesity and cancer, there is a logical extension to expect a connection between obesity and the step before cancer, which is adenoma,”said Hutan Ashrafian from Imperial College, London, who co-authored the study. Ashrafian and his colleagues analyzed data from 23 studies involving more than 100,000 people across the United States, Asia and Europe, looking at the relationship between polyps and body mass index, or BMI, a measure of weight relative to height. All the studies followed World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines that define people with a BMI over 25 as overweight and above 30 as obese. In most studies, polyps were identified during colonoscopy procedures while two large studies used self-reported questionnaires. Overall, researchers found that 22 per cent of overweight and obese people had colon polyps, compared to 19 per cent in people of normal weight. The polyp risk grew with increasing BMI. “The findings suggest that obesity may be having an effect (on cancer development) much earlier than we thought,” said Ashrafian, who with his fellow authors recommended timely colon cancer screening for overweight and obese people. The findings couldn’t say whether obesity causes polyps by itself, but if it does, that may be bad news for a world where obesity is on the rise. According to the World Health Organization, about 500 million people worldwide are obese. Colon cancer killed more than half a million people worldwide in 2008, WHO figures show.

helpful resources

Heavy people more likely to have colon polyps: Study

Promotion tile: Weight Loss Guide

How Does Colorectal Cancer Develop? Colorectal cancer usually begins as a “polyp,” a nonspecific term to describe a growth on the inner surface of the colon. Polyps are often non-cancerous growths but some can develop into cancer. The two most common types of polyps found in the colon and rectum include: Hyperplastic and inflammatory polyps. Usually these polyps do not carry a risk of developing into cancer. However, large hyperplastic polyps, especially on the right side of the colon, are of concern and should be completely removed. Adenomas or adenomatous polyps. Polyps, which, if left alone, could turn into colon cancer. These are considered pre-cancerous. Although most colorectal polyps do not become cancer, virtually all colon and rectal cancers start from these growths. People may inherit diseases in which the risk of colon polyps and cancer is very high. Colorectal cancer may also develop from areas of abnormal cells in the lining of the colon or rectum.

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