Response to the New Data on the Rising Incidence of Young-Onset Colorectal Cancer

Washington, District of Columbia, UNITED STATES

WASHINGTON, Feb. 28, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Colon Cancer Alliance issued the following statement from its CEO, Michael Sapienza, today, in response to reports of rising colon cancer rates in young adults:

"Today, the American Cancer Society released a new study confirming the dramatic increase of colon and rectal cancers in those under the age of 50. But what's more startling is that this isn't a surprise to anyone within our community – the data around this issue has been here since 2012, when we brought in experts from across the country for the nation's first young-onset symposium and released the breakthrough white paper highlighting this disturbing trend.

The data supports what we've been hearing from our community for years: young people, in the prime of their lives, are being diagnosed more often and at a later stage than any other group.

The question we've been working tirelessly to address – and the question every group needs to be asking – is why.

The rate of studies coming out about this issue is almost as rapid as the rise in incidence, and yet, no other group is taking up a stand to ask why this is happening and what we need to be doing.

We applaud the medical community for finally embracing this as a very real phenomenon, but it isn't enough.

We hear over and over again that members of our community are being misdiagnosed by those same medical professionals – being told they are too young for a colonoscopy because they aren't 50 years old. And by the time the cancer is found, months later, it is too late.

With five years of research studies, this is unacceptable and irresponsible. We have to do more for this generation – starting with the message to the public, to the medical community, to legislators and to everyone who will listen – that you're never too young for colorectal cancer."

About the Colon Cancer Alliance

The Colon Cancer Alliance was founded in 1999 by a group of 41 survivors, caregivers and friends who saw the need to educate the public about colon cancer and provide support to those affected by the disease. Since then, the organization has grown to be the nation's oldest and largest nonprofit dedicated to the disease, helping nearly 1.5 million patients and families every year. The Colon Cancer Alliance's mission is simple: to knock colon cancer out of the top three cancer killers. The organization is doing this by championing prevention, funding cutting-edge research, and providing the highest quality patient support services. Visit for more information.


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