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One in 10 New Bowel Cancer Cases Strikes Individuals Under 50

Recent research has found that in the last 30 years, there has been a triggering 266% surge in bowel cancer rates among adolescents and young adults aged 15 to 24.

Bowel cancer, also known as colorectal cancer, develops from the inner lining of the bowel and is usually preceded by polyps growths.

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In Australia, 1,680 people under the age of 50 are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year, and 290 of those lose their lives to this disease.

Bowel Cancer Australia CEO Julien Wiggins said people born in 1990 onwards would face double the risk of colon cancer.

“One in 10 new bowel cancer cases now occur in people under age 50,” Mr Wiggins said.

According to a study by Macquarie University, young people may spend three months and five years seeing multiple doctors before diagnosis, making 10 or more visits to the general practices for diagnosis.

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Chief Investigator Dr Klay Lamprell, Australian Institute of Health Innovation at Macquarie University, said young people would spend between three months and five years seeing multiple doctors before diagnosis.

“Even when younger people experience blood in their poo or rectal bleeding, GPs may not immediately refer them to specialists for further testing,” Dr Lamprell said.

“Young people with bowel cancer say the same world over. Because they are young, they are overlooked for bowel cancer.”

Individuals under the age of 50 face an elevated risk of developing bowel cancer if they encounter one or more symptoms, such as abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, or diarrhea.

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