Risk Factors and Symptoms Make an Appointment Refer a Patient Ask a Question Reviewed by Luette S. Morton, MD (October 01, 2012) Risk Factors for Colon Cancer You have an increased risk of developing colon cancer if: There is a history of colon cancer in your immediate family, especially if the relative is 60 years or younger. There is a personal history of colon polyps or, for women, a history of uterine or ovarian cancer before the age of 50. Symptoms of Colon Cancer The symptoms of colon cancer may vary and may be vague. This is one reason screening tests are so important. Symptoms of advanced colon cancer may include: Change in bowel habits Rectal bleeding Cramping and abdominal pain and/or a feeling of fullness that is not relieved by having a bowel movement. Some people with colon cancer have no symptoms. Since colon cancer is so common and symptoms of colon cancer vary greatly, screening is important. Diagnosis Treatment and Prevention Clinical Trials For more than 100 years, National Jewish Health has been committed to finding new treatments and cures for diseases. Search our clinical trials.