TERRE HAUTE, Ind (WTHI) -- When you hear someone talk about getting a colonoscopy, you might think that doesn't apply to you. 50 was the recommended age to get one but now it's 45.
Nurse Practitioner Melinda Fuqua said if colon cancer runs in your family then your first screening could come even earlier. She says you need to get screened ten years before the age your loved one was diagnosed. The earlier you can figure out what's going on with your body, the better you will be in the future.
One woman was screened at a very young age. Megan carter started having issues with her colon in her teenage years.
Growing up she dealt with those problems thinking it could be something else. Later on, she found out the problem was much worse than she originally thought.
Carter said, "And he found two polyps, one pre-cancerous"
She was only 27 when they found the cancerous polyp.
The only reason Carter decided it was time to get looked at by a doctor was because of the problems her husband was dealing with at the time. Carter's husband suffered from ulcerative colitis and had to get his colon removed.
Once her husband had recovered, Carter wanted to find out what was going on with her. She said, "After we got through all of this, a year later I talked to his gastroenterologist. I said 'okay we fixed him, let's focus on me because I've been dealing with these issues since I was a young girl."
Because Carter was able to catch the cancerous polyp early she did not develop cancer. With everything Carter and her family have been through she says this is the most important disease to be aware of.
Carter said, "This is the silent killer because a) we don't get many symptoms. Other than diarrhea and cramps I didn't have any symptoms."
The CDC says here are the early signs of colon cancer you should look out for: cramping, blood in your stool, and rapid weight loss.