LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — It was a surprise when Donna Terrell’s family was given the news that her daughter Queah, at only 27, had colon cancer.

She became part of a growing number of young people diagnosed with the disease.

Just last year the American Cancer Society predicted 18,000 under 50 would get colon cancer.

According to UAMS Dr. Conan Mustain the outcomes are often worse in young people. 

Dr. Conan Mustain, a colorectal surgeon at UAMS says it typically happens because fewer cancers are picked up by routine screening. 

“When you take the 50 and up age group you find cancers when they were asymptomatic,” Mustain said.

Queah had symptoms, but was misdiagnosed twice. Despite her age, Dr. Mustain said it’s important doctors take the signs and symptoms seriously.

“It may not be that screening asymptomatic people at a young age is what we need to do but just taking the threat seriously and recognizing that regardless of age if the patient is having symptoms it needs to be investigated,” Mustain said.

Queah’s cancer would eventually go into remission, but it came back.

It was yoga, that made her feel better from the side effects of treatment.

Which is why each year Donna Terrell’s Yoga Warriors fighting colon cancer event is held which helps to raise money for survivors of colon and other cancer.

Now people of all ages diagnosed with the disease have a new arsenal of weapons, which is a game changer.

Specifically targeted enzymatic drugs that are meant to turn off a specific mechanism that we know mutates in the colorectal cancers that are helping patients.

Queah would be happy to know progress is being made.