Colorectal cancer (CRC), also referred to as bowel cancer, colon cancer, or rectal cancer, is the improved form of cancer from the colon or rectum (parts of the large intestine). Signs and symptoms include blood in the stool, a change in bowel movements such as constipation or diarrhea, weight loss, and fatigue.
Most colorectal cancers are because of old age and unhealthy lifestyle elements, with only a small number of cases due to underlying genetic disorders. Risk factors include obesity, diet, smoking, and lack of physical activity. Some foods that increase the risk of colon cancer include red meat, processed meat like bacon, salami, beef, and, alcohol. Another risk factor is inflammatory bowel disorder, which incorporates Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Some of the inherited genetic disorders that can cause colorectal cancer include polyposis and People with a history of colorectal cancer in a first-degree relative such as parent, sibling, or child are at a higher risk; however, these represent less than five percent of cases.
"Our study offers new perception into the magnitude of risk for more distant relatives of colorectal cancer cases, and especially, for relatives of cases who were diagnosed before age 50," said researcher Heather Ochs-Balcom, an associate professor of epidemiology with the University at Buffalo School of public health and health professions.
"This work is vital given the growing rates of early-onset colorectal cancer," she said in a university news release. The researchers, from the University at Buffalo and the University of Utah, referred to early-onset colon cancer as cases diagnosed earlier than the age of 50.
First-degree relatives of someone diagnosed with early colon cancer are six times more likely to develop colon cancer before the age of 50; second-degree relatives are three times more likely, and third-degree relatives are about 1.5 times more likely, scientists found. For this study, they reviewed more than 1,500 early-onset colon cancer cases withinside the Utah Cancer Registry.
This study indicates that a colonoscopy screening before age 50 can be useful for second-degree relatives and probably third-degree relatives of someone who developed colon cancer, not just first-degree family members.