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News & Events

News & Events

Colorectal Cancer Rising Among Young Adults: What Young People Should Know

The new age for screening colonoscopy for average risk individuals is 45!

An unprecedented number of younger adults are being diagnosed with colorectal cancer. Whereas the older population had been the main group at risk, now we are seeing some startling changes. Colorectal cancer is rising among young adults and here’s what young people should know.

Recent Statistics

In the last twenty years, the diagnosis of colon cancer in adults fifty years and older has fallen. The American Cancer Society believes this is due to the drumbeat of the importance of getting screened. At the same time, it is rising in those who are younger.

Overall the colorectal cancer rate declined 3.6% annually among those 55 and older and increased by 2% annually in the same period among those under 55.

Colorectal cancer is not just a disease for old people anymore. It is believed that 12% of cases in 2020 will be in adults under age 50.

Know The Symptoms

Sometimes the signs of colorectal cancer overlap with other less serious conditions and can be overlooked or dismissed.

Signs of colon cancer include the following:

  • Blood in your stool
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Constipation
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fatigue
  • Bloated stomach
  • Change in bowel habits and shape of stool
  • Weight loss
  • Decreased appetite

Do not ignore any of these signs, and seek treatment from Dr. Parrish with any combination.

Be Aware Of The Risk Factors For Colorectal Cancer

Many of the risk factors for younger adults are similar to those of older adults. These risk factors make you more vulnerable to the disease.

African Americans are more at risk of getting colon cancer at a younger age than non-Hispanic whites. American natives and Alaskan natives are more at risk also.

In addition, diet plays a part. Those with a diet high in fats and processed meat and low in fruits and vegetables are more susceptible.

If you are overweight or obese, smoke, and do minimal to no exercise, you put yourself at risk.

Researchers have found that those with chronic conditions like IBS, diabetes, and Crohn’s disease which all cause inflammation put you at higher risk to develop colon cancer at a younger age.

If you have family members who have had colon cancer, this puts you at a higher risk.

Take Control Of Your Health

Pay attention. Be aware of the symptoms, know your personal risk factors, and get into the habit of looking at your stool. If you have any of the risk factors, begin screening at age 45 or earlier if you have risk factors.

Getting screened early can save your life. When any cancer is smaller, it most likely has not spread, and it is easier to treat.

Contact proctologist Aaron Parrish, MD at (408) 478-6750 as soon as possible if you have any suspicious symptoms to schedule a consultation in San Jose.

Let’s Talk About S*it

JSV Women's community presentation on colon cancer

JSV Women’s Community Presents

Join us to talk about survival, persistence and tenacity. Featuring, cancer THRIVER Jenessa Schwartz in an honest, uncensored conversation about what it takes to live through stage 4 colon cancer.

Skilled, compassionate surgeon, Aaron Parish will be joining us as an expert on colorectal health and early detection.

Outdoor Reception 6:00-6:30pm
Lecture 6:00-7:30pm 

At the Addison-Penzak JCC Auditorium.
Masks will be required inside; seating will accommodate safe distancing.

RSVP Required

Jenessa Schwartz

Jenessa Schwartz is the mother of two adorable redheads and partner to a high school physics teacher, also adorable. She lives ensconced in her village of grandparents, aunties, uncles, and forever friends, whom she could not live without. She is a middle school language arts teacher, surrogate mother and stage-four cancer thriver. She loves talking about her surrogacy and cancer experiences, partly because she is a middle child and needs the attention, but mostly because both surrogacy and colon cancer deserve the air-time.

Aaron Parish, M.D. is a Colorectal Surgeon, specializing in colonoscopy, robotic abdominal procedures, and proctology. His passion for the field was developed as a surgical resident in Los Angeles. Originally from Saratoga, he returned to the South Bay Area with his wife Jennifer, an intensive care physician at Good Samaritan Hospital, to start their family with daughter Ava.

Aaron Parish, MD


Colonoscopy Age Changes

Schedule Your Colonoscopy Today!

Colorectal cancer incidence has been increasing for those less than 50 years of age, which is a huge problem since screening has traditionally began at age 50.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has now joined the American Cancer Society in recommending screening colonoscopy to start at age 45. This will now require all insurers to cover screening colonoscopy starting at age 45 instead of at age 50.

You can find more information at:


American Cancer Society

Why You Shouldn’t Put Off Your Colonoscopy

“Don’t rush me; I’m waiting for the last minute,” might be the mantra of the procrastinator, but it’s not a recipe for a healthy life when it comes to scheduling a colonoscopy. You may have heard all kinds of nightmare stories from friends, but that dreaded anticipation is always worse than reality. If Dr. Aaron Parrish has recommended you have one, here are real reasons why you shouldn’t put off your colonoscopy. Banish your inner procrastinator and just do make it happen!

Continue reading “Why You Shouldn’t Put Off Your Colonoscopy”