15 Cancer Symptoms Women Shouldn’t Ignore
Cancer affects thousands of women around the world every year and early detection of this serious disease is the deciding factor for a complete cure. Understanding the signs and symptoms of cancer is imperative for women and heightened awareness of changes in the body can actually save a life. Like any other disease, cancer presents early symptoms before it graduates to full blown trauma and suffering. Understanding these early cancer symptoms is the key to successfully beat cancer in its early stages. Listed below are 15 signs and symptoms indicative of cancer that women shouldn’t ignore.
#1. Subtle and Conspicuous Breast Changes in Women
Breast cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer that affects women and it serves women well to be aware of breast changes, both conspicuous and subtle; to effectively detect breast cancer in its early stages. These breast cancer symptoms include dimpling or puckering of the skin on the breast, nipples that have turned inwards, discharge from the nipples and scaly red nipples and similar discoloration to the area around the nipples.
#2. Bloating in Women
Bloating accompanied by weight loss or bleeding is a warning symptom for various cancers that women should be aware of. Breast, colon, gastrointestinal, ovarian, pancreatic or uterine cancers often present with these early warning symptoms. It’s best to see a doctor if these cancer symptoms are present.
#3. Bleeding Between Menstrual Cycles in Women
Bleeding that doesn’t fit into the time frame of your normal menstrual cycle is best followed up by a visit to the doctor. Occasional menstrual irregularity is not uncommon, but a complete disruption to your menstrual cycle with excess bleeding in between menstruation cycles is a worrisome symptom, which can be indicative of cancer in women. It’s best to consult your doctor as he or she might want to rule out endometrial cancer. Vaginal bleeding after menopause is never medically okay and must be followed up with a visit to a doctor.
#4. Dermal Changes in Women
Subtle or conspicuous changes to skin have the potential of being warning symptoms for skin cancers. Such cancers present in the form of sores that refuses to heal, red scaly lumps, growing discolored moles and spots that suddenly present themselves with tenderness and itching. These are the cancer symptoms to look out for detecting skin cancers in their early stages in women.
#5. Blood in Urine or Stools in Women
While blood in urine and stools can be symptoms of various ailments; consulting a doctor when such a situation presents itself may help women rule out various cancers, such as colon, bladder and cancer of the kidneys.
#6. Lymph Node Changes in Women
Swelling, tenderness and discomfort on and around the lymph nodes can be warning cancer symptoms for cancers like leukemia and lymphoma. Most other infections can have the same effect on the lymph nodes; however, a visit to the doctor is advised to rule out early stages of cancer in women.
#7. Discomfort While Swallowing
Discomfort while swallowing accompanied by weight loss and vomiting is often a symptom of throat and stomach cancer. These symptoms may be presented in other instances too; however, your doctor might want to test you to rule out cancer.
#8. Unexplained Weight Loss in Women
Unexplained weight loss without a new weight loss diet or sudden spurt in exercise and physical activity is a symptom of many illnesses including various cancers. Colon, lung and stomach cancers can often be accompanied by the symptom of weight loss in women.
#9. Increased Heartburn in Women
A poor diet, stress and alcohol are most often the culprits behind heartburn; however, cancers of the ovaries, throat and stomach can often be accompanied by worsening heartburn. Consult a doctor if changes to your lifestyle and diet do not put a stop to heartburn in a few days.
#10. Oral Symptoms of Cancer in Women
Oral symptoms in the form of discoloration and cancer sores in the mouth may be indicative of oral cancer in women who smoke and is best seen to by a doctor.
#11. Persistent Fever in Women
Persistent fever is one of the early symptoms of leukemia and other blood cancers. Fevers happen when your immune system is busy fighting diseases and infections; persistent fever can be a symptom of greater infections, such as cancer.
#12. Fatigue in Women
Fatigue is a common issue for women who work hard in and out of the home; however, persistent and unexplained fatigue even after ample rest may be a symptom of a greater health problem such as cancer. Fatigue combined with other symptoms, such as bloody stools and urine warrants testing for various cancers and a doctor’s visit to start with.
#13. Persistent Coughing in Women
Coughing that is not caused by a commonplace viral infection and will not go away with cough syrups and other forms of medication may be a lung cancer symptom. If you are a smoker and you experience persistent coughing for over 4 weeks often accompanied by blood; ask your doctor to screen you for lung cancer.
#14. Unexplained Pain in Women
Unexplained pain that spreads around the body and persists for an unreasonable amount of time may be a symptom of brain and bone cancers. Consulting a doctor for pain caused due to other factors or testing for cancer is the obvious next step.
#15. Belly Aches in Women
Belly aches happen for a wide range of reasons; most commonly indigestion. However, stomach cancer can also be accompanied by persistent belly aches. Consult a doctor for unexplained belly aches symptom.
- Vaginal Cancer: Types, Causes, Risk Factors, Signs, Symptoms, Investigations, Stages, Treatment
- Is Cervical Cancer Curable|Survival Rate & Treatment of Cervical Cancer
- High-Cal Foods May Raise Cancer Risk in Women, Even Without Weight Gain
- Could Urban Lighting Raise Breast Cancer Risk for Some Women?
- Most Women Should Forgo Ovarian Cancer Screening: Panel