Cancer is seen as a fatal disease worldwide. It is simply defined as uncontrolled growth of cells. Medically known as malignant neoplasm, cancer is a broad group of disease involving unregulated cell growth. There are more than 100 different types of cancer. The causes of cancer are complex and diverse, hence partially understood. Cancer can be detected through presence of certain symptoms and signs, screening test or medical imaging. Cancer is usually treated with chemotherapy, radiation therapy or surgery. The chances of surviving the disease vary greatly by the type, location and extent of the cancer and the time of start of treatment. Cancer can affect people of all ages but the risk increases with growing age. Most of the people die due to cancer because their treatment didn’t start on time as the disease was diagnosed at advanced stage. So it is wiser to be careful at our end. Here are the 10 most likely symptoms of cancer….
10. Upset Stomach
Persistent stomach disorder is not as simple as it sounds, immediate medical attention should be given to it. Many lucky folks who reported it to their doctors found out through ultrasounds that their liver had tumor in it and immediate medical attention saved their lives. Stomach cramps or frequent upset stomachs may indicate colorectal cancer; many cancer patients say their doctors thought they had ulcers.
9. Unexplained Weight loss
If you have lost a lot of weight recently that can’t be explained by your diet plan, workout schedule, stress or change in daily routine then it might be a cause for concern. Weight loss is an early sign of colon and other digestive cancers; it’s also a sign of cancer that’s spread to the liver, affecting your appetite and the ability of your body to rid itself of wastes. An unexplained weight loss of 10 pounds or more may be the first sign of cancer
8. Frequent fever and Infections
Frequent Fever and infections always indicate reduced immunity and hence a cause of concern. Fever is very common with cancer. Often it is reported after cancer is spread from where it started. The disease itself and its treatment both affect immune system hence it is seen in almost all cancer patients. Less often fever can be seen as early sign of cancer such as Leukemia (Blood Cancer). Often doctor diagnose Leukemia after persistent complain of fever, ache and flu like system over extended period of time.
7. Fatigue and Headache
Fatigue is described as feeling of extreme and persistent tiredness that does not get much better with rest. If you feel like resting every now and then, after few household chores all you can spot is couch then instead of catching up a nap visit your doctor. Fatigue and pain in body parts when accompanied with others symptoms are reported as cause to many types of cancers like leukemia, stomach cancers. Many cancers are reported with lot of blood loss which justifies fatigue. However in some type of cancer fatigue and headache is seen as early symptoms.
6. Abnormal Bleeding
Unusual bleeding is undoubtedly a cause of concern. Abnormal bleeding is seen as a sign of early as well as advanced cancer. Seek immediate medical attention in case of encounter with any of following symptoms:
- Bleeding between periods, after sex or after menopause (Cancer of the womb or Cervix).
- Blood in urine (Bladder or Kidney cancer).
- Blood when you cough (Lung cancer).
- Blood when you vomit (Stomach cancer).
- Bruising and nosebleeds accompanied with other symptom are also reported as rare sign of cancer (Leukemia).
5. Skin Changes
An unexpected change in your mole could prove hazardous if overlooked! Malignant Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that often starts with a change in appearance of normal skin. This can look like change in existing mole as one third of the melanoma develops in existing mole. It might be a cause for concern, if you have a mole with any of the following signs:
- Irregular or Asymmetrical mole.
- Irregular border with jagged edges.
- More than one color (brown, red, pink, white or black).
- Bigger than 7 mm in diameter.
- Itchy, Crusting or Bleeding.
Beside these symptoms an unusual fingernail should also be checked upon. Nails with brown or black streak or dot may indicate skin cancer. Newly discovered “clubbing” (enlargement of nails of figure that curve down the tip) can be a sign of lung cancer. Sometimes pale or white nails are reported indicating lung cancer.
4. Difficulty in Swallowing or Hoarseness
A sore throat that does not heal is mostly seen as a sign of stress or overload and hence always overlooked. A hoarse or low, husky voice or feeling of something pressing on throat or feeling of having something stuck in your windpipe can be an early indication of thyroid cancer or a precancerous nodule.
Most commonly associated with esophageal or throat cancer, difficulty swallowing is sometimes one of the first signs of lung cancer, too.
3. Changes in Bowel Movement
Constipation, Diarrhea or changes in stools continuing for an extended period of time without a clear cause should certainly be reported to doctor. They are seen as early symptom of cancer. More precisely these symptoms are described as feeling of not having emptied your bowel, abdomen ache, alternate diarrhea, pain while urinating, and blood in stools. One of the early signs of pancreatic cancer is fatty stools, which can be recognized as frequent, large stools that are paler than normal and smelly. This is a sign that your body’s not absorbing your food normally, and it should be brought to your doctor’s attention immediately.
2. Unusual Lump
It is always advised by doctors to keep a check on your body parts for any unusual lumps. If you notice a lump on your breast or any other part which in increasing in size rapidly, immediately report it to doctor. It is difficult to tell what kind of lump it is by looking at it so in case of slightest issues your doctor will recommend you necessary tests.
1. Persistent Coughing, Breathlessness and Chest pain
These are reported as most likely symptoms of cancer as they are among those signs which are mostly ignored or avoided. No one seeks medical attention for treating cough. Persistent coughing, wheezing, chest pain and breathlessness are among those mostly overlooked symptoms among old age. This is the main reason because of which most of the cancers are diagnosed at advanced stages. Inability to catch breath is most likely sign of lung cancer. A cough that does not go away is also a cause of concern.