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Warning Signs Of Cancer

Warning Signs Of Cancer

What are the warning signs of cancer? Anything persistently unusual about carrying out a daily routine, something that makes you feel uneasy in your body. According to a study done in November 2019, the typical cancer symptoms are basic.

People might not believe small signs to be a symptom of an underlying disease. Neck lumps, sudden pain, abnormal breathing and inability to do daily chores are some of the basic symptoms of different types of cancer.

Most of the time, the results may not show any presence of cancer cells in the body, but that doesn't mean that one is safe from any future attacks. It is normally advised by the best cancer hospitals to undergo a thorough check-up every five years.

Also Read: Cancer Symptoms Side Effects

Watch out for these Warning Signs of Cancer

The most important steps for identifying warning signs of cancer include acknowledging the importance of self-diagnosis, regular cancer screening check-ups, and changing unhealthy habits.

  • Warning Signs of Breast CancerA survey of 69 women in a comprehensive Breast Cancer Treatment program at the main national cancer hospital in Ethiopia showed that almost all of the subjects in the study noticed a lump at some point and most participants also dismissed the lump, at first, as nothing to be concerned with. Some participants ignored their lump for several years. In time, they noted more lumps or changes in symptoms (pain, itching).
  • Warning Signs of Mouth CancerA study done in the USA in 2017 points to red/white lesions in the mouth as the more likely early sign of Oral Cancer.
  • Cervical Cancer SymptomsAccording to a cross-sectional survey of 581 women aged 2164 years, participants reported foul vaginal discharge (44%), vaginal bleeding (28.3%), pelvic or back pain (14.9%), and pain during coitus (14.6%).
  • Colon Cancer Symptoms: Researchers from Switzerland report changes in bowel habits bloody bowel movements, and abdominal pain as the alerting symptoms.
  • Lung Cancer Symptoms: The most common is cough, followed by dyspnea, chest pain, hemoptysis, anorexia, weight loss, and Fatigue.
  • Ovarian Cancer Symptoms: The three highest known symptoms among women were as follows: extreme fatigue, back pain, and persistent pain in the pelvic area, as reported in Jordan, 2018.

What can you do with the Warning Signs of Cancer?

The first thing you can do about the warning signs of cancer is to prevent them. Preventive care plays a stepping stone to a successful normal life without any health issues. This idea applies to every disease in general. How you can do this by having check-ups with the cancer care provider at least twice a year to be sure of being safe and healthy. Money and efforts spent on keeping and ensuring you are healthy are not wasted.

Last but not least, how active you are affects your health and reduces the risk of many diseases, including cancer. Try doing Yoga if you can, take the stairs instead of the elevator, and take the long road on your way home. Such little efforts can help you achieve the health goals you never imagined. Make it a point to set targets and run them over; this can help achieve higher levels of fitness.

Also Read: Cancer Symptoms and Treatments

Earlier diagnosis increases the chances of a cure

Early detection of tumour cells assists in eradicating cancer quickly and saving the situation from getting worse with time. It serves to provide Cancer Treatment in the best possible way. With so many advances in science, there are cancer hospitals in almost every country.

Being aware is freedom, but being ignorant is foolish and lethal. Researching warning signs of cancer may prevent you from undergoing rigorous treatments in the future.

Some early warnings of cancer:

As said earlier, the symptoms are diverse and expressed in each person differently. So, you need to consult a doctor before taking any step. Just having the symptoms alone doesn't mean you have this disease. Even the oncologist can confirm it after performing various diagnostic tests. But if you have any of these symptoms, you should seek a specialist's advice. Below are some common symptoms of cancer.

  • A new mole a change in an old one or any skin changes
  • You may have a sore that doesn't heal away
  • You may notice a lump in your breast, a change in the skin colour of your breast, or changes in the shape and size of the nipple or breast
  • Change in the texture of your skin
  • Unexplainable fatigue that doesn't go away even after resting or a nap
  • Any strange bleeding, discharge, or pus, like in the urine, from the vagina, in the stool, or while coughing
  • You are losing weight even without trying
  • Sudden and strange changes in bowel movements or habit
  • A lump that hurts or grows
  • A persistent cough
  • Eating problems like loss of appetite, trouble swallowing food, nausea, vomiting, feeling uncomfortable after eating, etc
  • Night sweats and chills
  • Pain or burning sensation while peeing and having to pee frequently
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Unexplainable and persistent fever
  • Headaches
  • Problems with vision or hearing
  • Sores, numbness, bleeding, or pain in the mouth
  • New pain that has no obvious reason but is getting worse

Pathological tests

These include some simple tests like blood or urine tests. A blood test can reveal a lot about bodily functions. Any abnormalities can hint at an underlying disease. Various markers may indicate the presence of cancer in the body. However, these tests are not definitive tests for cancer detection.

Imaging tests

Imaging tests can help form a picture or an image of the internal organs of the body. These tests can help get more detailed information than pathological tests. various imaging tests are:

X-rays: They can be used to create a three-dimensional image of the internal organs. The X-ray machine takes a series of images and is tethered to a computer that collects and analyses the data. The patient might have to take a special type of dye that can make the images clearer and easier to read.

PET scan: In this type of scan, the patient has to take a tracer through injection. When this tracer has spread, the PET machine generates three-dimensional images of the internal organs wherever the tracer has accumulated. This test can reveal how well our organs are functioning.

Nuclear scan: In this scan, just like a PET scan, a tracer is injected into the body. This tracer is radioactive. The tracer might get deposited in some body parts. A scanner can measure the radioactivity of these body parts to render the images.

Ultrasound: This test uses sound waves to generate the images of the organs. The ultrasound sound device sends the sound of a particular frequency that is inaudible to human ears. These sound waves bounce and create an echo. The computer picks these echoes to generate the images.

MRI: Another imaging test used to generate images of the internal organs by using a strong magnet. These images are printed on a special film for further analysis and reference.

Biopsy scans: In this test, a small sample of the tumour is taken and analysed under a microscope to find if it is cancerous. There are many types of biopsy scans, such as needle biopsy, endoscopic biopsy, and surgical biopsy.

Warning Signs Of Cancer

Summing up

You might have gained a bit of insight into the symptoms of cancer and how various tests can help diagnose this disease. These symptoms can happen due to a variety of reasons. So, don't think that you have cancer just because you have some of these symptoms. But you should consult your doctor if symptoms last longer or worsen.

On the other hand, you may not develop any symptoms or very mild symptoms upon the onset of cancer. So, you should go for regular checkups. If you have a family history of any cancer, talk to a doctor to know all about your risks and what tests and preventive measures you should adopt.

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Reference:

  1. Feizi A, Kazemnejad A, Hosseini M, Parsa-Yekta Z, Jamali J. Assessing awareness level about warning signs of cancer and its determinants in an Iranian general population. J Health Popul Nutr. 2011 Dec;29(6):656-9. doi: 10.3329/jhpn.v29i6.9904. PMID: 22283041; PMCID: PMC3259730.

  2. Gizaw AB, Gutema HT, Germossa GN. Cancer Warning Symptoms Awareness and Associated Factors Among Individuals Living in Assella Town, Ethiopia. SAGE Open Nurs. 2021 Nov 24;7:23779608211053493. doi: 10.1177/23779608211053493. PMID: 35155771; PMCID: PMC8832288.

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