8 Warning Signs of Common Cancers

Know the warning signs of common cancers. (Image: Vision Times)
Know the warning signs of common cancers. (Image: Vision Times)

Much of the suffering and death from cancer could be prevented by more systematic efforts to reduce tobacco use, improve diet and physical activity, and expand the use of established screening tests.

Lung cancer remains the No.1 cancer killer, with breast cancer second, and colorectal cancer third.

Early detection of cancer means treatment can be more effective, so here are the early warning signs of the most common cancer types.

8 warning signs of cancer

  1. Change in bowel or bladder habits
  2. A sore that does not heal
  3. Unusual bleeding or discharge
  4. Thickening or lumps in the breast or elsewhere
  5. Indigestion or difficulty in swallowing
  6. Obvious change in wart or mole
  7. Nagging cough or hoarseness
  8. Deep, persistent aching pain lasting more than a week or two

Warning signs of common cancers

Lung cancer

  1. Persistent cough
  2. Sputum streaked with blood
  3. Shortness of breath
  4. New onset of wheezing
  5. Recurrent pneumonia or bronchitis
  6. Hoarseness
  7. Chest pain that is often worse with deep breathing, coughing or laughing.

Breast cancer

  1. A lump or thickening in or near the breast, or in the underarm, that persists through the menstrual cycle
  2. A mass or lump in your breast that may feel as small as a pea
  3. A change in size, shape, or contour of the breast
  4. A blood-stained or clear fluid discharge from the nipple
  5. A change in the feel or appearance of the skin on the breast or nipple (dimpled, scaly, or inflamed)
  6. Redness of the skin on the breast or nipple
  7. An area that is distinctly different from any other area on either breast
  8. A marble-like hardened area under the skin

Colorectal cancer

  1. Having chronic diarrhea or constipation
  2. Feeling that your bowel does not empty completely
  3. Finding blood (either bright red or very dark) in you stool
  4. Finding that your stools are narrower than usual
  5. Feeling frequent gas pains or cramps
  6. Losing weight for no known reason
  7. Feeling very tired all the time. Having nausea or vomiting

Prostate cancer

  1. Not being able to pass urine
  2. Having a hard time starting or stopping the urine flow
  3. Needing to urinate often, especially at night
  4. Urine flow that appears to start and stop on its own. Weak flow of urine
  5. Pain or burning during urination
  6. Difficulty having an erection
  7. Blood in the urine or semen
  8. Frequent pain in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs

Uterus, ovary and cervix

  1. Abnormal vaginal bleeding , including bleeding after menopause
  2. Unusual vaginal discharge
  3. Enlargement of the abdomen
  4. Pelvic or abdominal pain, may also occur during intercourse
  5. Persistent indigestion, gas, or nausea

If you have any of these symptoms, it does not necessarily mean you have cancer, so please consult you doctor for a thorough checkup.


Source: Asian Fund for Cancer Research

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