I’m 19, severe health anxiety related to CC

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I’m 19, severe health anxiety related to CC

Postby Jordan88 » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:32 pm

Hello. Before anything, I would like to apologize if something like this is an unwelcome post on a site where people have actually been diagnosed with cancer or know someone who has cancer. I do not wish to offend anyone.

I’m posting here just to vent and also get some support. I had a recent bout of recal bleeding, and due to some other things in my life at the moment, my health anxiety really got the best of me. I fear colon cancer. I have an appointment at a GI in the morning, and I’m really almost positive it’s not cancer but I know I can’t rule it out. I’m going to try to push for a colonoscopy.

I know I should stray away from looking up my symptoms, as it’s been a huge factor in my health anxiety. I’m actually considering going to therapy for it.

I have no family history, and I don’t think I’ve really experienced the other symptoms associated with colon cancer, but symptoms aren’t a good way to know for sure as I’ve learned.

I know the chances for this happening to me are very slim, but I can’t help but worry.
To give this post some meaning now that I’ve said a whole bunch of nothing - what should I expect at the GI tomorrow? This will be my first time at this particular one as I got referred by my primary doctor. What questions should I ask? I appreciate you all, and from browsing the forum for a while you all seem like such kind souls.

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Joined: Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:29 pm

Re: I’m 19, severe health anxiety related to CC

Postby Punky44 » Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:10 pm

As someone who also suffers from health anxiety, I can relate. I had the same fear back in Oct/Nov when my mom was diagnosed. Like you, I had experienced rectal bleeding before. You seem to be battling your anxiety decently in that you say you are pretty sure it’s not cancer because given your age, I also am pretty sure it’s not either. Does colon cancer run in your family? Does lynch syndrome run in your family? If no, then your chances of this being colon cancer are really slim. But you are doing the right thing going to a GI and getting things checked out. And if you do end up getting a colonoscopy, it really is no big deal. I also hope you can find help for your anxiety. I am considering ordering David Veale’s Overcoming Health Anxiety self help book.
Caregiver to my amazing mom (68)
10/1/18 DX with rectal cancer; CEA 17 at diagnosis
MRI/CT/PET puts staging at T3N2M0
Total neoadjuvant therapy:
8 rounds Folfox 11/5/18 - 2/11/19
Short course radiation 3/14/19 - 3/20/19
Robotically assisted laparoscopic LAR 3/21/19
Pathology report says yT2N0M0 with 0/38 nodes
CEA 4/23: 2.1
6/28/19 Reversal and port out

Me: 34, first colonoscopy 11/16/18—normal! Come back in 5 years.

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Re: I’m 19, severe health anxiety related to CC

Postby Jordan88 » Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:54 pm

I’m fairly positive colon cancer does not run in my family. To be honest, I’ve always had pretty bad bathroom habits. I hate public restrooms, so if I have to go, I always wait until I get home. I pass hard stools a lot, and I actually kind of felt this bleed coming in (because my previous bowel movement had a stool that was hard/sharp, but I don’t want to be too optimistic). I sit a lot as well, and kind of strain, but not necessarily due to chronic constipation, just from me wanting to push it out. I don’t know what it could be, and I’ve been under an insane amount of stress lately (my dad’s been in the hospital, and I had to call an ambulance for him a month later, and also some other health anxiety attacks). I also went to have blood work done in October and I wasn’t anemic then, and I haven’t lost any weight. I’m hopeful it’s not cancer, and when my hypochondria isn’t on my mind, I’m pretty positive it isn’t. But, I know not to ignore it so that’s why I’m going for the colonoscopy. I’m just dreading the prep and being under anesthesia as I’ve never been sedated before. Thanks for replying to me, I appreciate it.

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Joined: Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:14 pm

Re: I’m 19, severe health anxiety related to CC

Postby Jordan88 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:32 am

Apologies for posting so late into the AM, and so often on this thread that may be a bit insensitive on this site for some people. I just need to vent my worries some more.

I’m coming down from a cold or something similar as well, and I really hope this is an isolated incident. I got sick around New Year’s Day, probably from being out on New Year’s Eve. My symptoms were a sore throat for two days, a sore side of my neck for a day or so (don’t think this was a lymph node but I could be wrong, it was not visible though), and some phlegm from post nasal drip, all clear or yellowish green, which I believe is normal during a period of sickness. I mistakenly went on a small road trip up north to Flagstaff, AZ with my girlfriend yesterday while I was still getting over this sickness and I think it halted my progress in getting better and I felt pretty bad that night. But with some rest I feel pretty much normal today, just a small amount of coughing and runny nose. Only things that concern me now are an ache in my lower left abdomen when I am in certain positions or breathe with my diaphragm (could I be constipated? Don’t feel that way. I’ll definitely bring this up to my GI tomorrow morning and will probably help in convincing to get a colonoscopy), and I just went to the bathroom to try to see if a BM would help. I did the thing where I pulled my knees closer to me to simulate a squatting position to help pass the stool. No blood I don’t think, but the stool was kinda loose, and these was a decent amount of stool (no blood) on the toilet paper when I wiped. Almost diarrhea but closer to normal stool. I don’t know if this is just from me being sick.

I’m still worried about colon cancer but I’m not as scared right now. Even if worst comes to worst, I feel confident in being able to secure a colonoscopy, as my symptoms should convince the doc despite my age. And if it is what I’m fearing, which I really don’t want to think about, I feel like being proactive and catching it early is obviously going to help in the long run. And I feel better in general seeing a doctor about my problems. I just hope I’m able to tell the doctor everything and that they don’t just brush me off. This anxiety and other things have robbed me of enjoying my life the the past few months and time only feels like it’s going by so slowly. I start to cry at the idea that something terrible is wrong with me. I know that the chances are so slim. It’s not a healthy way to think, but I often think of other people in my age range who thought “it’s nearly impossible to happen to me” yet were still unfortunate enough to be struck with it. I know the key is to be aware and not really scared of it but I find that hard. I really hope things end up well for me and that soon I’ll be able to not be anywhere near a doctor for at least six months. I should get some sleep and hope for something good tomorrow. God bless you all and I’m very sorry for acting like such a baby.

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Maggie Nell
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Re: I’m 19, severe health anxiety related to CC

Postby Maggie Nell » Mon Jan 07, 2019 7:07 am

There are a bunch of other cancers you can get, what is it about colon cancer that
yanks your chain in particular?

Lot of health anxiety is rooted in the fear of treatment, vestigal memories
and laudanum dreams that we inherit from ancestors who didn't have benefit of anaesthesia,
penicillin and and all those war stories. Those sort of stories trickle into your life when you're
very young and then what you learn at school, see on the news, read in the paper, watch at the
movies, books....you build up a crust of Scary Shit and it can keep you on the ropes.

Might be information at this link that will keep you away from Dr Google for ...oh...5 minutes :P

https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/pr ... ss/6866448
DX April 2015, @ 54
35mm poorly diff. tumour, incidental finding following emergency r. hemicolectomy
for ileo-colic intussusception.
Lymph nodes: 0/22
T3 N0 MX
July 2019 : pending liver U/S, colonoscopy
rut roh

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