I Live in Intense Fear that I Have Colon Cancer

I am a 40-year-old male. About 1 1/2 ago I started getting terrible watery and gassy stools. Then I would have thin ribbons and stools that looked like pencil shavings. I haven't had a "normal" bowel movement in about 1 1/2.

I did have a fecal occult blood test and a sigmoidoscopy which came back normal. Lately, I have had pain in my upper right abdomen and have completely lost my appetite. When I do eat (very small amounts), it bloats me up and makes me feel nauseated.

I live in intense fear that this is colon cancer and has spread to my liver. Do you have advice about what I should do next?

I'm going to assume that when you said you haven't had a normal bowel movement in 1 1/2, you meant a year and a half. You're absolutely right to pay attention to and question that.

You mentioned that your fecal occult blood test and sigmoidoscopy both came back normal. Have you talked to your doctor about getting a colonoscopy? A sigmoidoscopy examines the lower part of the colon, but a colonoscopy examines the entire length of the colon.

I think you should explain your fears to a doctor, then ask what she/he thinks is the best thing to do. If you don't feel like your concerns are being adequately addressed, seek a second opinion.

Thanks for coming to me with your question.

Please remember that I am not a medical professional. I offer my input as a neighbor, a friend, sitting at the kitchen table talking about what's on your mind and trying to help if I can. This is not medical advice. Please don't consider it medical advice or pass it on to others as medical advice. Thanks.

Source: Healthcare Center: Colonoscopy. A.D.A.M. 24 Jun. 2006.