eDiseases

General Cancer Symptoms

General Cancer Symptoms

May 18
11:53 2017

There many different
symptoms of cancer. Every case of cancer is unique and can cause different symptoms
in different patients. The general cancer symptoms are more common because most
cancers use up the body’s resources making it difficult, or impossible, to
properly restore itself with nutrients and cells, maintain balance of hormones,
and/or perform normal functions. However, many of the general cancer symptoms
are also symptoms or signs of other less threatening infections, diseases, or
other medical conditions. This is why it is important to get screened for
certain types of cancer if any of these symptoms of cancer persist. Some
cancers can be detected with simple imaging tests such as a CT scan, MRI, or
ultrasound. However, other cancers, like colorectal cancer, sometimes require
more intense means of screening, like a colonoscopy. If the patient’s health
care provider can not positively identify cancer through imaging tests, but
feels that cancer may exist, a surgical procedure such as a biopsy may be
necessary.

Unintended Weight Loss

Unusual loss of weight is one of the usual symptoms of cancer. In many cases of
cancer, most notably stomach, lung, esophagus, and pancreas cancer often cause
the patient to experience dramatic weight loss. This usually happens because
the cancer is disrupting the way in which the body digests food. The cancer could
possibly kill the cells that help the body store fat and nutrients.

Excessive Tiredness

It is very common for a patient suffering from cancer to experience excessive
tiredness. Even with sleep, the fatigue does not go away. This is one of the
most challenging symptoms of cancer, because it dramatically affects the
patient’s life, limiting what they are able to do. Many cancers, as they
develop, keep using more and more of the body’s energy and resources. When a
healthy person is tired, they rest, and as they are sleeping, the body restores
the body with nutrients and energy. This is mainly why the body sleeps.
However, in cancer patients, the disease is using up all of the nutrients and
energy in order to form, develop and grow. Therefore, the tiredness does not go
away. Simple things, such as walking up stairs and getting up to go to the
bathroom can become extremely difficult because of this symptom.

Fever-Like Symptoms

Fever like symptoms of cancer are extremely common, even more so once
metastasis occurs. Most cancer patients will suffer from a fever at some point
during the duration of their disease. This happens because the cancer usually
destroys the body’s immune system. The immune system is what prevents the body
from getting sick. It fights of infections, diseases, and anything that is
harmful to your body. Some types of cancer will only weaken the body’s immune
system, while others will completely destroy it. This not only causes fever
like symptoms, but it makes it much easier for the body to obtain other
infections and illnesses.

Skin Alterations

Skin Alterations are also very common in cancer patients. Cancer patients can
experience many different changes to the skin. Cancer symptoms relating to the
skin depend on the type of cancer, it’s location, and stage. It is common for
some cancers to cause the skin closest to it, to become darker in color. The
skin can become dark red, blue-like and maybe even black. However, the skin can
also change to yellow. When both the eyes and skin turn yellow, it is known as
jaundice. Many skin cancer patients report symptoms of persistent itching. In
some cancers, hair may start to grow much more than usual in certain areas of
the body. This may be because the cancer has damaged the tumor suppressor gene.
The tumor suppressor gene slows down the process in which cells grow and
divide. If this gene is altered, it can let hair grow uncontrollably. The
cancer can also damage the oncogene, which speeds up the cell growth and
division process. In some cases the cancer can cause this gene to work faster
than it is supposed to.

Pain and/or Discomfort

Pain is one the general cancer symptoms that usually occurs while the cancer is
in its early stages. Even though it is common for a cancer patient to feel pain
with many cancers, it is a more common side effect of cancers in the bone and
testicles. A persistent headache, that can not be treated with over the counter
medication, could be an early symptom of a cancer in the patient’s brain. A
cancer patient usually experiences pain because the tumor itself is putting
pressure on surrounding tissue, nerves, and organs. If the cancer is forming in
a larger area of the body, the patient may not experience pain until the cancer
grows and spreads through out the body. However, if cancer is forming in a
smaller, or more delicate part of the body, such as the brain or in any of the
bones, pain can be noticed much quicker. If not treated properly, the cancer
can, and most likely will, continue to grow. There is no limitation to how much
a cancer can grow. The body’s tissue, nerves and eventually other organs will
face physical pressure from the cancer. This obviously causes pain.

These are just some of the many possible symptoms of cancer. These symptoms are
some of the most common, because of what all cancers tend to do to the body’s
organs, defense mechanisms, and how it can affect certain processes. However,
every case of cancer is different from any other. Cancer symptoms are not
always predictable like symptoms of the common cold. There is no limit as to
what symptoms a cancer can produce. This is why if you experience any of these
general cancer symptoms, or any other abnormalities consistently, or for more
than twenty four to forty eight hours, you should see your primary health care
provider as soon as possible. Early detection helps save many lives every year from various
types of cancer. Most types of cancer can be successfully treated if they are
detected during the disease’s initial stages. However, once the cancer spreads,
it becomes more difficult to remove with surgery, or treat with chemotherapy
and/or radiation therapy.



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