Signs & Symptoms

Many people who have been diagnosed with colorectal cancer have said they had no symptoms or warning signs. However, the following symptoms MAY indicate there is a problem. Of course, other conditions can cause the same symptoms, such as hemorrhoids, IBD, infection, etc., so
patients should consult their doctor if they experience any of the following symptoms.

  • Blood in stool (although not always visible.) Blood can be rectal bleeding, dark stools or blood
  • on the stool, although the stool will look normal.
  • Diarrhea (that will not stop) that lasts for more than a few days, not just after eating Taco Bell
  • Constipation (you can’t “go” to save your life) that lasts for more than a few days
  • Unintended or unexplained weight loss (or weight gain)
  • Vomiting
  • Narrow stools – poo looks pencil-thin
  • Change in stools – poo just looks different, smells different
  • Anemia
  • Extreme abdominal pain and/or discomfort
  • Passing a large amount of blood

It’s just a hemorrhoid…

Many times, even though the symptoms are very clear, young adults are misdiagnosed or their diagnosis is prolonged due to their age. Know your body, and if you feel your doctors are not listening to you, find a doctor who you feel will take the time to take you seriously. Over the years, here are some of the assumed diagnoses early age onset patients have shared with us that they received before doctors discovered their colorectal cancer:

  • Hemorrhoids
  • Stress
  • Colitis or Crohn’s Disease
  • Depression and psychiatric help
  • Appendicitis
  • Spastic colon
  • Spiritual problems
  • Ulcer
  • Gall bladder problems
  • Low fiber or poor diet
  • Endometriosis
  • “Female” problems
  • Anal fissure