Mumsnet hasn't checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you have medical concerns, please seek medical attention; if you think your problem could be acute, do so immediately. Even qualified doctors can't diagnose over the internet, so do bear that in mind when seeking or giving advice.
This is a Premium feature
Worried I have bowel cancer at 23? Please help(124 Posts)
I woke up about a week ago with a burning sensation while weeing which concerned me as I’ve had an UTI in the past (I’m a male) however I didn’t have chance to see a doctor the same day so I just waited a few days to see how it went. I started to get quite bad abdomen pains, I found it very painful to walk, turn in bed, cough or sneeze, no changes in bowel movement. I’d say on a scale of 1-10 - it was about 5,6. I think the pain was everywhere in my abdomen, not just on the left or right side. So I went to the out of hours doctor expecting it to be another UTI. The nurse said no infection was found which surprised me so she said to visit my GP. The pain went pretty quickly and I can’t feel anything now.
Fast forward a few more days - I have quite bad constipation. I haven’t had a bowel movement since Tuesday and when I do strain a lot, a tiny piece of poo comes out with mucus and dot of bright red blood (sorry to be TMI) and it was long and pencil like! I had blood tests recently which showed as normal except my haemoglobin MCH was a tiny bit low but everything else is within the normal range (I do have an underactive thyroid which isn’t being treated at the moment)
I’ve googled my symptoms (yes - I know doctor Google isn’t my friend) and they all say bowel cancer
I’m going to push my GP for a referral to see the colonoscopy but I’m so worried it is bowel cancer? Has anyone has the same or similar symptoms as me and found out it was something else? I’m not sure if I posted this in the right place and I don’t mean to disrespect those battling with this awful disease - I would just like some help as I don’t know who else to turn to.
Thanks for reading
First off It's good that you are going to the docs about it. Secondly stay away from google! It will always say the worse things first when there are lots if other things it could be that have the same symptoms
The chances of it being BC are low but it's good to be aware of the symptoms. My brother in his twenties had bowel pain and lots of blood/mucus when going to the toilet. He too was worried about it BC but it turned out to be a bowel condition (can't remember the name)so please try not to worry.
At your age it's vanishingly unlikely to be bowel cancer, there's lots of other more likely possibilities, especially if you've recently been ill (always throws my system off!). Definitely talk to your doctor, but do try to reassure yourself it's likely to be something thoroughly boring.
Thanks guys! I just used the toilet and I notice the shape has gone back to its normal size with no blood but slight mucus. I will still visit the doctor though.
Definitely see the doctor but chances are it's not cancer. Maybe a UTI, piles along with constipation. Bright red is a better sign as a dark colour would indicate the blood had come from further up the bowel
I don’t think it’s a UTI. I saw a nurse about that and she said she couldn’t see any infections in my urine! Now I have liquid diarrhea, loss of appetite and just generally feeling sick there’s no blood or abdominal pain though - just mucus...
It’s good you’re getting checked out but it’s extremely unlikely you have bowel cancer. It could be ulcerative colitis which causes mucus/blood in poo, diarrhoea, feeling unwell/fever, stomach pain. It could be an infection. Please don’t google if you can help it. Hope you get it sorted soon and feel much better. My DD has UC and hers started with weight loss, blood/mucus and severe pain, diarrhoea (A&E thought it was appendicitis).
Doesn't sound like bowel cancer to me, it's more likely constipation and the hard stool has caused a bit of bleeding on its way out. People have piles, internal and external, both constipation and diarrhoea cause them to bleed. It's very dramatic to think you have cancer! I hope you've managed to see your doctor.
A friend of mine had bowel cancer in his late 20's, rare but possible. However it's been caught early, and with radical surgery and chemotherapy he is considered cured. But it is very unlikely
Drink lots of water OP. If I'm constipated I drink 2-4 pints of water and that usually sorts things out. If it doesn't then get some Lactulose from the pharmacy, but please step away from Google! You should follow up with the doctor, particularly if s/he has any concerns, but don't assume the worst.
Why isn’t your underactive thyroid being treated? Hypothyroidism can cause constipation, bloating and cramping.
The blood sounds likely to be due to straining.
Thanks for the reassurance guys. If I called 111 - would they give me an X-ray? I am due to see a doctor Tuesday. My appetite has somewhat come back now but I seem to have diarrhea now! Still no blood in stools, just mucus on the tissue. A bit of pain whenever I eat but soon subsides.
I’m not being treated for my thyroid as it’s apparently not that bad to be treated!
No 111 wouldn’t let you have an XRay.
This isn’t an emergency and you have an appointment with a GP.
Tell the doctor how worried you are; they are very helpful if they know you are suffering from this anxiety .
If it was you’d be the youngest ever patient in the U.K. with colorectal cancer. No reported cases under 27 years. Then only one across the country.
No, 111 won’t get you an x-ray! You’ve got a dr’s appt on Tuesday. Nothing needs to be done until then
If you are really constipated then blood and mucus are the body's way of lubrication. If you now have diarrhoea, then ask the doctor to do a faecal calprotectin test. This will show up any inflammation in the bowel.
Its probably not cancer, but could be coeliacs or IBD. Hopefully it's just a bout of constipation, but hopefully your GP can put your mind at rest.
Thanks so much for the help! I’ve been so worried for days about this! I haven’t really spoken to anyone about the possibility of cancer except my partner. It’s just concerned me as little over a week ago - I felt fine! Now suddenly my bowel movements have completely changed !
It totally won't be bowel cancer. Stop worrying and go out and enjoy being so young!
Of course it's worrying. But stress can have funny effects on the stomach too.
Put it this way, I had a sudden change in BM, went to the doctor and they put forward an urgent referral for tests for bowel cancer. The hospital refused and said that as I was under 40 it wouldn't be that and I'd have to wait. Thankfully it wasn't cancer, but I was diagnosed with IBD. I'd probably had it most of my life, but it was the massive change in symptoms that made me go to the doctor. Turned out my "normal" wasn't everyone else's normal. The stress of having tests and waiting for results made me 10x sicker.
Azul, what were your symptoms? As you can probably tell - I don’t deal with anxiety and stress that well
I’ve seen my GP now. Very dismissive! I told him my worries and concerns and he said I don’t have bowel cancer and it’s all anxiety related I asked to be referred to a specialist and he refused! He felt my tummy and said he couldn’t feel any lumps or anything abnormal. I offered to show him a picture of my faeces but he didn’t wish to look as they’re narrow. He looked at my eyes and said everything looks fine! I’m going to see another GP Friday as I know this isn’t all in my head!
I am sure he’s probably right! But you need to have that anxiety dealt with, and surely they couid send you for some blood tests anyway. Good idea to see another doctor
I feel like he could have done another blood test as I had one a month ago! But he looked over my blood test results from a month ago and said my haemoglobin levels are fine (mine is 16.4) and my red blood cell count is good also (I think 6). I wanted to do him to do a rectal examination but he didn’t seem like he was up for that... perhaps better luck on Friday! He was so against the idea I possibly have bowel cancer as I’m only 23 and have no family history or medical history of bowel problems/cancer.
Why are you going to see another GP?
Do you have anxiety over other things, health related or otherwise?
Join the discussion
Please login first.