Become familiar with your body, acknowledge when it changes, and get a checkup. When cancer is spotted early, the odds are much better for successful treatment, possibly avoiding surgery, and keeping it from spreading. That means a much better chance for a cure.
Cancer causes a wide variety of signs and symptoms, depending on where it is in the body, how large it is and howmuch it affects different organs and tissues. Cancer is unpredictable. Sometimes signs and symptoms don’t show up until the cancer has spread and is pressing on nearby nerves or organs.
• Unexplained weight loss of 10 pounds or more
• Fever that lasts a long time
• Extreme fatigue, weakness or dizzy spells
• Unexplained pain anywhere in the body, such as a persistent headache
• Nagging cough or hoarseness
• Unusual skin changes, such as darkened, yellowish or reddened skin, itching, or excessive hair growth
• Recent color/size/shape change of a wart or mole
• Red or thickened skin on the breast
• Thickening or lump in the breast or other parts of the body
• Change in bowel habits or pain while urinating
• Indigestion or trouble swallowing
• Sores in the mouth or elsewhere that do not heal
• Any long lasting mouth changes, such as white patches inside the mouth or white spots on the tongue
• Unusual bleeding or discharge
• Blood clots in the veins or legs
These are the more common signs of a possible cancer. If you have any of these, don’t panic, but DO see your doctor or nurse practitioner and ask for a thorough screening.
Signs and symptoms can include