8 Sure Signs You Have Cancer
The dreaded "C" word is something no one wants to hear from their doctor. While cancer is terrifying, it's important to spot this disease early to increase your chances of survival and stop it from growing or spreading. Learning some signs that you have cancer is one way you can spot the disease early on. Check out these 8 signs you have cancer so you can take it seriously and spot this dreaded disease early on. As for our current pandemic, to make it through the healthiest way out, don't miss out on these surefire signs you've already had with coronavirus.
Lumps and swellings in lymph nodes
Swollen lymph nodes
When your body is battling a cold, flu, or other illness, the lymph nodes in your neck and armpits may swell or look enlarged. This is completely normal and a sign that your body is working overtime to kill the disease quickly. However, the swelling of your lymph nodes should go away in a few weeks. If they stay puffy or develop lumps, it is a sign that something else may be wrong.
The Rx: According to Dr. Adrian Bloor of The Christie Private Care: "If you discover a new lump or swelling that does not go away after a few days, it is best to see a doctor for a thorough assessment." It could be a leading indicator of blood cancer. "Your swollen lymph nodes might be nothing, but it could also be a sign of lymphoma, leukemia, or myeloma.
Blood in your stool
Hand of a woman closing the lid of a toilet
Seeing blood in your stool can be scary and it's important to watch out for if you're seeing red in the toilet. Blood in your stool can be due to a number of diseases, some of which are not very serious. However, it could also be an indication of colon cancer.
The Rx: According to Dr. Mache Seibel: "Of course you can have blood in your stool, for example because you have a tear or tear in the tissue around your rectum or from a hemorrhoid or from ulcerative colitis or many other kinds of diseases. Blood is just a warning sign; it is not a guarantee of cancer. "However, Johns Hopkins Medicine confirms that there may be obvious bright red blood in the stool or darker stool, which suggests that blood should be tested for potential colon cancer. If you see blood in your stool, see your doctor so they can rule out colon cancer.
Hoarse voice that won't go away
Woman with severe sore throat
If you've drank too much, rode roller coasters or watched your favorite band the night before, a hoarse voice can be explained. Also, when you are recovering from a cold or other illness, it can leave you dealing with a hoarse voice for a few days. However, if your voice becomes inexplicably hoarse and this hoarseness lasts for several weeks, it could be a sign of throat cancer.
The Rx: According to Dr. Dale Ekbom, M.D. of the Mayo Clinic, "If hoarseness lasts longer than two weeks, the list of possible causes becomes much larger." He mentions cancer of the larynx as a possible explanation for long-term hoarseness and explains that vocal cord cancer, if "detected early, can often be successfully treated with surgery or radiation". Your hoarseness may be related to persistent illness or simple irritation to your vocal cords, but it's best to have it checked if it persists.
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Jaundice patient with yellowish discoloration of the skin compared to normal skin color.
Jaundice is a yellowing of the skin and eyes that may cause itching and irritation, or may not be felt at all. The skin turns yellow when your bile duct becomes blocked by a tumor and a yellow pigment called bilirubin builds up in the system. Jaundice can be treated with medication or surgery.
The Rx: However, it is the cause of the jaundice that is affected. According to one of Dr. Peter Saul-reviewed study "about half of patients are diagnosed with a tumor in the head of the pancreas, and many of them have jaundice." If your skin turns a yellowish hue, you should see your doctor right away to make sure you do not have pancreatic cancer.
A skin growth on the head or neck
Girl with birthmarks on her neck
According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), approximately two million Americans are diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, a common form of skin cancer, each year. Detecting this type of skin cancer early is critical to preventing it from spreading. The good news is that this type of skin cancer is slow to grow, but the bad news is that it can easily be mistaken for a pimple or scar.
The Rx: The AAD warns that basal cell carcinoma "often develops on the head or neck and looks like a shiny, raised, rounded growth". If you notice any abnormal skin growths or irritation that looks like this, make an appointment with your dermatologist. While this growth may not be anything, it could indicate basal cell carcinoma, and if caught early, it's an easy procedure to remove.
Young woman, blond hair, passed out in bed.
Seizures are severe and frightening. If you have a seizure, you should seek emergency medical treatment and consult with your doctor about the cause. In some cases, a seizure may be due to a brain tumor or a growth that may be cancerous.
The Rx: According to Dr. Jessica W. Templer, MD of the Northwestern Medicine Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, “Patients may not know that seizures are a result of their brain tumor. The seizures caused by brain tumors are complex and different for each patient based on the type and location of the tumor.” Their seizure could indicate abnormal glucose levels or a benign tumor. However, it's best to seek treatment right away to find out if brain cancer was the cause of your episode.
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A single and hard lump in the breast
Breast cancer self-test
According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, one in eight women in the United States will develop breast cancer at some point in their life. Early detection is key to stopping breast cancer from spreading. Lumps and bumps on your breast tissue are signs that cancer may be growing. However, the professionals at the Carol M. Baldwin Breast Care Center at the Stony Brook Cancer Center state, "Most breast lumps - 80% of those biopsied - are benign (not cancerous)."
The Rx: While most lumps and bumps aren't cancerous, it's important to watch out for individual, hard lumps on your breasts. These health professionals warn that "most malignant tumors appear first as single, hard lumps or lumps that are often, but not always painless". If you notice any bumps, thickening, or abnormalities, contact your doctor and get a mammogram right away.
White or gray spots in the mouth
Woman breathes with her mouth open
You may find white patches in your mouth as irritation from food, braces, dentures, or a holder. However, if you notice thickened areas in your mouth that are white or gray that cannot be scratched off, you may have developed leukoplakia, which is a tissue change that may be precancerous.
The Rx: According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are around 657,000 new cases of oral cancer worldwide each year. If you use tobacco, drink alcohol frequently, or lead an unhealthy lifestyle, you are more likely to develop some form of oral cancer. Your leukoplakia may be treatable and will only lead to oral cancer if detected early. As for yourself, for the healthiest way through this pandemic, don't miss these 35 places that are most likely to catch COVID.
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