General Cancer Symptoms Everyone Should Know About

The American Cancer Society estimates more than 1.6 million people in the United States will be diagnosed with cancer in 2015. While the types of cancer may vary, the reality is all cancers combined lead to an estimated 589,000 deaths in America each and every year. Early detection is critical for bringing those numbers down. While routine screenings for various types of cancer are important, so too is understanding basic symptoms of this disease. While each type of cancer may have its own distinct set of symptoms, there are some generalized signals worth paying attention to.

General signs and symptoms of cancer may indicate other conditions, as well, but when they persist, it is important to seek medical diagnosis for the root cause of the problem. Here are some of the general symptoms that may indicate the presence of cancer in the body:

• Unexplained weight loss – While this can be a sign of a variety of other conditions, it is also indicative of cancer. If weight loss of 10 or more pounds has occurred without an easy explanation, going in to see your doctor is probably in order.
• Fever – This symptom goes hand-in-hand with a lot of conditions. Even so, fever without a ready explanation, especially if it persists, should be checked out by a doctor.
• Fatigue – Again, this is a warning sign for a number of different conditions, but this symptom tends to be present with cancer, especially as it grows. If fatigue is persistent and rest does not alleviate it, going in for medical advice is in order.
• Pain – Unexplained pain can also be a symptom of various forms of cancer. Headaches that won’t go away, for example, might indicate brain cancer while persistent back pain can signal issues with an ovary, the rectum or colon.

If any of the above symptoms are present and persistent and no other explanation is readily available, getting checked out by a medical professional is an important next step to take. Early detection and treatment of cancer can save lives.

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