New research identifies earliest signs of colon cancer

Colon cancer is a disease that’s increasingly found in young adults – not old enough to qualify for colonoscopies. 

Colorectal cancer cases occurring in people under age 55 doubled from 1995 to 2019, the American Cancer Society said.

New research has found four distinct signs before a diagnosis – abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, ongoing diarrhea and iron deficiency anemia.

Nearly half of the study participants experienced at least one of those symptoms three months before they were diagnosed.

However, colonoscopies are recommended only at or after age 45. That means people may have symptoms long before they seek doctors’ care or are ever diagnosed.