The Symptoms of Cancer

Symptoms of cancer are felt or noticed first by you if you have the disease. They are often not easily seen by another person unlike signs. Surprisingly and unfortunately, a tumor doesn’t always produce specific symptoms. That is why it is important to pay attention to what your body is feeling. It's important to know what the signs to look out for.

There are types of cancer that don't give any warning. Pancreatic and lung cancers don't have early symptoms. When you already experience symptoms, the abnormal growth is usually at its advanced stage making it harder to treat.

Related Article: Facts About Lung Tumor

Although the disease is a complicated one, there are general symptoms of cancer regardless of the type. They include:

Unexpected weight loss

There are medical conditions like anemia and tuberculosis that can cause too much weight loss. However, a sudden and huge weight loss is a general symptom for all cancers. It can be a symptom of a tumor in either an early stage or advanced stage.

If you notice that you're losing a lot of weight which can’t be explained, see your doctor as soon as you can.

Changes in bowel movements

Changes in how you move your bowels can occur if your diet has changed or you're stressed. But if nothing new is added to your diet or you're not under stress and you notice abnormal changes in your bowel movements, have yourself checked for colon polyps.

Changes will include thin stools and even blood in your stools. They are usually the first signs for tumors in your colon walls or rectum.

Excessive fatigue

A lingering and excessive tiredness is often associated with cancers of the pancreas, colon, stomach and leukemia.

Abnormal cells in the pancreas can release substances that lead to blood clots in the veins of your legs while those found in the lungs can release substances similar to hormones that increase calcium levels in the blood. The blood clots and the increased calcium levels affect your muscles and nerves making you feel weak and dizzy. You should not disregard both symptoms because they are not closely linked to those types of tumor.

Pain from cancer

Be aware of chronic and long-lasting pain. This kind of pain usually means cancers of the bone, brain, ovary or colon depending on where the pain is felt.

Chronic indigestion

This symptom can mean something not dangerous or harmful. Indigestion can be a result of overeating or eating of spicy foods. But if it occurs often and lasts long, see your doctor because it is one of the symptoms for tumors in the stomach.

Trouble swallowing or Dysphagia

If this symptom persists and can’t be explained, it may be a symptom of tumors in the esophagus.

One of the interesting cancer facts is it is a disease that can give you symptoms or signs of an entirely different type of illness. It is possible for you not to feel any of the symptoms of cancer and yet be diagnosed with it.

A tumor often doesn’t produce symptoms because cancer cells may develop in organs where they will not manifest themselves. A tumor may not make you feel that something is wrong unless it has grown big enough to affect nearby organs.

Sometimes, the disease can also produce symptoms that are not usually linked to it. How does this happen? Tumors sometimes release substances in the bloodstream that produce indications that are not actually symptoms of cancer. Again, tumors that grow in the pancreas and lungs are examples of these.

If the cancer has metastasized to other body organs, indications of cancer can be felt in the various parts of your body and not just where it started. Some cancer types create symptoms that are similar and general like losing weight.

A symptom should not be ignored especially if you have felt them for quite a time and they are getting worse. It is your body's way of telling you that something is wrong. Sometimes people ignore symptoms because they are not aware that whatever their body is manifesting means something is wrong. Or they may be afraid of what the symptoms might indicate.

If you have any of the symptoms, it is recommended that you see a doctor who will be able to look further for possible signs of cancer.

It is possible to detect the tumor before you have the indications. There are available special check-ups and certain tests for tumors. This is especially helpful to people whose families have a history of the disease.

Knowing and being aware of the symptoms of cancer are vital steps on prevention of the disease.

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