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Young and Diagnosed with Colon Cancer

Posts: 64
Joined: Mar 2006

I am 28 years old with stage IV colorectal cancer. I was just wondering how many people out there have been disgnosed with colorectal cancer and were also under the typical screening age.

kerry's picture
Posts: 1317
Joined: Jan 2003

There are a LOT of folks out here that fall under the suggested screening age! It is a BIG frustration. You will be hearing from them very soon.

Let us know how you are doing.


bryancarson's picture
Posts: 47
Joined: Jan 2004

I was first diagnosed at 29 with stage II Colon Cancer and then again at 31 with stage III. I have beat the dreaded disease twice and I know that you can do it also! They say that because we are young sometimes the chemo is harder to handle. I know, you would think it would be easier, but i assure you that life is worth the fight. I agree. There needs to be more publicity about those of us WAY under the first screening age suffering from colon cancer. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me!

chynabear's picture
Posts: 483
Joined: Jul 2005

I was diagnosed with Stage III CRC the day after my 27th birthday 1 year and 8 months ago. Because of my young age, I was misdiagnosed for three years.

You have found a great place for support, inspiration, and getting questions answered.


Posts: 45
Joined: Nov 2005

I was 28 when I was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer last fall. It was definitely a huge shock to me--I don't have a family history of colon cancer, I've never smoked, I was in great shape physically and had been a vegetarian for 12 years--I didn't really have any risk factors. I've since met (both online and in person) a fair number of people who were diagnosed at younger ages. It's not as uncommon as I thought, and it is frustrating that colon cancer awareness campaigns portray the disease as an over-50 disease. I was really lucky in that both my primary care doctor and my gastroenterologist took my symptoms seriously and had me have a colonoscopy right away.


rthornton's picture
Posts: 346
Joined: May 2005

I was diagnosed last year with stage four at the age of 35. I feel old compared to those others that have responded, but I was still much younger than the average age (which I think is 63). I agree with Jen ... people should be encouraged to get regular screening before 50 years of age.


KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

That's my cause, Rodney...I was even older...49...but since my diagnosis I have met sooooo many under the age...
My big mouth opens to every physician, healthcare worker, and legislator...and I don't pull punches...I tell them my experience, and then very pointedly ask "Have YOU been screened???" I usually get their FULL attention after that...
Hugs, Kathi

spongebob's picture
Posts: 2598
Joined: Apr 2003

Hi, tennislover -

When I was 33 I noticed some symptoms and asked to be screened - my mom and grandfather had colon cancer. They blew me off for three years (because I was "too young") When they finally did the test they found I had it.

You want to see and converse with a bunch of young survivors? Go to http://www.colonclub.org All of us there were Dx under 40.

Welcome to the SemiColons. Sucks that you're here, but we're glad to have you.


- SpongeBob

Posts: 57
Joined: May 2005

I was 25 when I was diagnosed with stage 1 rectal cancer. I was very lucky to have it found it at this stage - the tumour started bleeding very heavily so they wanted to check for a bleeding ulcer or inflammatory bowel disease. The hospital I am treated at is a very large teaching hospital, and they have never had a case my age or anything like it before. However, I think that you will see from this board there are quite a few of us.

If you have any questions post away, you get a lot of great advice on here.

Take care :)

goldfinch's picture
Posts: 737
Joined: Oct 2003

I was 46, almost 47 when I was initially diagnosed with stage 3. It has progressed to Stage 4 but I continue to fight it. Starting new chemo regimen today. It's been almost 3 years now. No family history.
Seems like screening guidelines need to be changed.

Posts: 185
Joined: Feb 2004


I was diagnosed with stage 3 rectal cancer in 1999. I am 7 plus years disease free. Sadly, many of us on this site were diagnosed at a young age. However, some studies reflect a better survival rate in younger patients with this disease. For some reason the genetic variation of this early onset may leave the cancer more vulnerable to treatment. In my case, the preoperative chemoradiaiton completely eradicated the tumor. Keep playing tennis (one of the first things I did when diagnosed was renew my subscription to Runner's World magazine, a small but symbolic gesture of survival). Also, read both of Lance Armstrong's books on his recovery from cancer. I run almost as fast as before cancer, and each day is a victory. Best of luck, and let us know how your treatment goes.

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Posts: 185
Joined: Feb 2004

36 when diagnossed, more than 7 years ago, with stage 3 rectal cancer. I keep living and running...putting criminals in jail and raising a family. Never, never, never, never give up!

Posts: 64
Joined: Mar 2006

Thank you everyone for responding. I had no idea that this was as common as it seems. It is very motivating to read about the number of people who have this cancer that do fall under the screening age. Thank you for your comments!

suzannchili's picture
Posts: 135
Joined: Mar 2003

29 at diagnosis. It's been 5 1/2 yrs now. Stay strong and battle the beast!

Betsydoglover's picture
Posts: 1256
Joined: Jul 2005

Tennislover -

I am not one of the young ones - diagnosed at 55 with Stage IV colorectal. But we still have lots in common. I am doing well and so soon will you be doing well.

As always I am so sorry to see you here, but also so glad you found us. We can help and you can find not only many young people on this site, but also many stage IV survivors of whatever age to help you with this journey.

My best wishes to you.

Take care,

Posts: 205
Joined: Feb 2006

I was dignosed this past Nov. Stage 4 .I was 45 .I celebrated my 46th while receiving treatment # 3. I am going to wait and watch this post and on Fri when I go down and get my Pump off . Oh yeah my plateles were back in the chemo safe zone, So I had my chemo treatment #11 minus the Oxy . Any ways I am going to print this page out and show him . He told me yesterday that quite a few Onc. from all over were coming to Brooks Army Med. They are coming here to discuss colon cancer . I would love it if he would show this tread to them (hint Dr. Jones )
Take care tennis lover I am so glad you found us .
Please keep us posted
God Bless

jerseysue's picture
Posts: 626
Joined: Oct 2005

I was 41 dx with stage IV about 1 year ago.

Posts: 297
Joined: Apr 2004

I am an old fart comparaed to you. I was dx at age 51 stage 4 with mets to my ovaries. Everything removed 2/04 Recurrence 12/05. Cancer sucks my friend, but you have found the right place with supportive and caring people. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Terri

Posts: 319
Joined: Jan 2003

Hi, I am not as young as you are, but was told at at age 46 that I probably had my colon cancer 10 years prior my diagnois. That means 36 years old. Colon Cancer wasn't my begining journey it started with breast at 44 then colon at 46 then colon cancer that metast to my liver at a ripe old age of 49. Breast and colon two separate(sp) cancers, colon and liver same cancers. I always thought we should be screened earlier than 50 years old. At present 51 years old and NED once again.

Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2011

I don't have colon cancer but I was cur ious as to the symptoms that you had that lead you to get checked out thank you and I really hope your doing well

Posts: 157
Joined: Jan 2011

My son was 27yrs old when dx'd with stage 3 rectal cancer. He was bleeding and the drs passed it off has hemorroids. Typically there are no symptoms until the late stage of the disease. That's why its so important to have a colonoscopy. The medical world really needs to lower the age from 50yrs old as a starting point. Because of my sons dx, my other children are at a higher risk. My younger son who is 25 has a colonoscopy and they found a polyp. It was non cancerous but the dr said it is not normal for a person in there 20's to develop polpys. He will be having colonosopies every year for at least 3 yrs.

If you have family history of colon cancer you may want to discuss your concerns with your dr.

Hope this was helpful.


Sonia32's picture
Posts: 1078
Joined: Mar 2009

with stage 3 cancer, 10/11 lymph nodes infected. Two years out from diagnosis and 18 months from last chemo, touch wood still in remission.


Just realised the dates on the posts, need glasses. Doh

Posts: 72
Joined: Nov 2010

My wife was diagnosed with Stage IV last Septembers at the age of 33- 5m after giving birth to our son.

September '10 - colon resection, 3/22 lymph nodes + and removed, liver biopsy. 15 - 20 mucinous tumors in liver.
October ' 10 - port placed and started on FOLFOX + Avastin.
Jan '11 Isolated Liver Perfussion and Intra Hepatic Pump placed.
June '11 Taken off systemic chemo and will be given 3 more IHP chemos and then will be done with the hope it never, ever comes back.

Onc said his heart sank last year and he didn't expect her to respond this well. So, no matter how grim it may appear there is ALWAYS HOPE!!!

University of Pittsburgh
David Bartlett - Surg Onc
Nathan Baharu - Onc

Best of luck!

christinecarl's picture
Posts: 545
Joined: Sep 2009

I was 40 when diagnosed at stage IIIB, I am 42 now.. Not in my 20''s, but still young by the stats of who gets this

Betsydoglover's picture
Posts: 1256
Joined: Jul 2005

Hi all - this is an old post that got brought forward. I just thought I'd mention that Tennislover (Heather Maas) was the December 2008 Colondar model. She passed during 2008. Maybe starting a new thread would be good (although it was nice to see her name pop back up). I met her in 2007 at a crc conference and she was a sweet person.

Betsy (Stage IV, diagnosed 5/05, much history, currently NED)

Posts: 124
Joined: Mar 2011

oh my, I read this entire thread, not noticing dates, and with each post I kept hoping for a positive update from Tennislover, and with each post kept praying that she'd be found cancer free, only to see that she died 3 years ago.

mommyof2kds's picture
Posts: 522
Joined: Mar 2009

RIP God Bless Petrina

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