Cancer is one of the deadliest medical conditions in the world. Anyone can develop cancer, but it is more common as you get older. Knowing how your body works may help you be aware of any changes that could be caused by cancer. If the condition is found in its early stages, it could be cured. However, in the final stages, not much can be done to save the ill.
Here are some general symptoms associated with cancer :
1- Unexplained weight loss :
By many patients, weight loss is the first noticeable symptom of cancer. It is an issue common in 50 to 85% of cancer sufferers.
The reason behind that, is a condition called cachexia caused by cancer, in which patients lose lean mass muscle, despite eating adequate amounts of food. They become weak and easily fatigued.
Patients who suffer from a sudden, unexplained weight loss are generally linked with cancers of the pancreas, the stomach, and the lung.
2- Breathlessness :
If you find yourself breathing heavily more than you usually do, and so, for a long period, it’s time to tell your doctor. Being out of breath is one of the early symptoms of cancer.
Another symptom of cancer is persistent tiredness. If you constantly feel fatigued, even after having a rest, you could be suffering from leukemia ( blood cancer), or other types such as colon and stomach cancers.
3- Unexplained bleeding :
If you have coughed up blood, whatever the color, it is important to tell your doctor about it. It might point out to lung cancer.
Finding blood in your poo or your pee should also be reported to your doctor. Usually, it could be treated pretty quickly, but in some other cases, it could be a sign of cancer.
4- A change in bowel habits :
If you have noticed changes in your bowel movements, such as looser poo, constipation, or diarrhea that don’t get better with time, it might indicate bladder or rectal cancer.
5- Unusual lumps :
If you notice the formation of any lump or swelling on your body, you should immediately make an appointment with your doctor.
However, cancerous lumps that can be felt from the outside of your body can easily be recognized. They are usually hard, large in size, and painless to the touch. They appear in various areas, including the neck, breasts, testicles, arms, and legs.
6- Skin and nail changes :
A cancer patient’s skin may become red, dry or itchy. If you notice anything abnormal within your skin, including other skin changes such as skin rashes, apparition of moles, freckles or warts, it is time to check in with your doctor.
Nails may also become dark, cracked or yellow.
· You can reduce your risk of skin cancer by limiting your exposure to ultra-violet (UV) radiation or by protecting yourself from the sun by wearing appropriate clothes like hats, long-sleeved shirts and wearing sunscreen of at least SPF 15.