Serious Situation Arises as Colorectal Cancer Cases Surge 500% in Children: Study

Colorectal Cancer

A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has revealed a concerning trend in colorectal cancer cases among children, showing a staggering 500% increase over the past two decades. The study also reported a 333% rise in cases among individuals aged 15-19 and a 185% increase in those aged 20-24. Despite these alarming rate increases, Moffitt Cancer Center emphasizes that the absolute number of cases remains relatively low.

Presented during Digestive Disease Week, the data from Moffitt Cancer Center indicates that in 2020, there were 0.6 cases of colorectal cancer per 100,000 children aged 10-14, compared to 0.1 per 100,000 in 1999. Tiago Biachi, an oncologist at Moffitt Cancer Center, expressed concern over these findings, highlighting the need to understand the underlying factors contributing to this concerning trend.

Biachi suggested that the development of colorectal cancer in children may be linked to early exposure to risk factors such as obesity, diets high in processed foods, sedentary lifestyles, and alterations in gut microbiome due to antibiotic use. Recognizing symptoms such as persistent abdominal pain, cramping, changes in bowel habits, unexplained weight loss, constipation, diarrhea, or bleeding is crucial for early detection and intervention.

While current guidelines recommend colonoscopy screenings starting at age 45 for asymptomatic individuals, Moffitt Cancer Center stresses the importance of screening individuals of any age who exhibit symptoms associated with colorectal cancer. This study underscores the need for increased awareness, early detection, and proactive measures to address the rising incidence of colorectal cancer in children and young adults.

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