LIFESTYLE
22/06/2015 06:08 BST | Updated 22/06/2015 06:59 BST

Father Diagnosed With Bowel Cancer Aged 30 - Passing Blood On The Toilet Was His Only Symptom

Steve Shergold passed around a pint of blood when he went to the toilet after going to the Isle of Wight festival in June 2012.

He brushed it off, assuming the vast amount of alcohol, bad food and lack of sleep had somehow affected of his bowels. But his wife insisted he went to A&E.

It was there, aged 30, that he received the devastating diagnosis that he had bowel cancer.

"They [the doctors] knew nothing more at this stage and couldn't even tell them if he would be okay. They had to do MRIs, CTs and a full colonoscopy to find out if the cancer had spread elsewhere," Shergold's wife Gina said, according to the MailOnline.

During surgery to have the cancer removed from his bowels, doctors discovered the disease had spread to Shergold's lymph nodes.

It soon spread to his lungs, but Shergold underwent five rounds of chemotherapy to beat the disease.

While he completed his final round of treatment in October 2014, his wife gave birth to their first child.

According to a recent survey of patients under the age of 50 from Bowel Cancer UK, four out of five people were not aware that they could be at risk of bowel cancer at their age before diagnosis.

One in four people in this age category waited over three months after getting symptoms before going to the GP.

The NHS states that common symptoms of bowel cancer include blood in the stools, a persistent change in bowel habits, abdominal pain and discomfort or bloating always provoked by eating.

Following the birth of his daughter, Shergold wants to raise awareness about bowel cancer so that younger people know how to spot the symptoms and seek the treatment that they need.

"I was 30 when I was diagnosed and the possibility that I had cancer didn't once cross my mind, I was completely unaware it could even happen to someone my age," he said.

"It came as a huge shock. When I was diagnosed, I didn't want to speak to anyone and was in denial for a long time. My wife has been incredibly supportive, and has received lots of support herself from bowel cancer charities."

Check out Bowel Cancer UK's Never Too Young campaign or visit Stand Out To Stop Bowel Cancer to find out more about bowel cancer affecting younger people.

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