Cancer is a scary word. But when you know all the facts, knowledge and understanding can reduce the fear. Find out everything you need to know about cancer and its effects...

Cancer Symptoms

Cancer symptoms vary widely and would depend on the type of cancer, how large it is and how severe it is.  When the tumours have metastasized or have spread to other parts of the body, then the cancer symptoms may become visible in those areas.  However, there are instances when the tumours will not show themselves since they do not press on organs, blood vessels and nerves, enough to be seen. 

General Cancer Symptoms

  • A lot of people who have cancer lost weight during the course of the disease.  Most of the time, the cause of weight loss is unknown.  Usually, the recorded unknown weight loss is at 10 pounds or more and this is usually the first of the many cancer symptoms.

  • Fever is a common symptom which indicates that there is something wrong with the immune system of the body. This is usually experienced by cancer patients who have the tumours spread throughout the body with which the immune system is not strong enough to fight infection.

  • Pain is one of the biggest cancer symptoms most especially for bone or testicular cancers.  Migraine that does not cease even with medications may be a sign of brain tumours.  Pain is usually an indication that the cancer has already spread to other parts of the body.

  • Skin changes such as hyperpigmentation, jaundice, erythema, pruritis and excessive hair growth may be indications that skin cancer is prevalent.

  • Fatigue or extreme tiredness is one of the most important general cancer symptoms to look out for especially for those who have possibilities of developing leukemia or stomach cancers.

Specific Cancer Symptoms

  • Changes in bowel movement and urination may indicate problems with the colon, bladder or prostate.  Consult your doctor if you are constipated for a long time or if there is blood in your urine or pain during urination.

  • Sores that take so long to heal is a skin cancer symptom.  People who smoke tobacco or drink alcohol must make it a point to get checked for cancer symptoms right away should they have bleeding or sores that do not mend as fast as they should.

  • Unusual bleeding or discharge happen in cancer patients during the early stages and even in advanced stages of cancer.  Blood in the phlegm is a sign of lung cancer while blood in the stool is a sign of rectal or colon cancer.  Abnormal vaginal bleeding is a major symptom of cervical cancer.

  • Lumps in various parts of the body are one of the most obvious cancer symptoms that must not be ignored.  Thickening of the tissues around the breasts or testicles indicate tumours.  Tests may need to be done in order to determine if they are lumps in early or late stages of cancer.

Why are Cancer Symptoms Important?

Identifying cancer symptoms early can greatly make a difference in cancer treatment.  If the tumours are small, then there is a big possibility that they have not spread in the other parts of the body.  This also increases the probability that the cancer will be cured.