Men, just because something seems minor doesn’t mean you shouldn’t
take it seriously – especially when in regards to your health. New
research found that even common ailments could actually be your body’s
first warning signs of cancer. Cancer is among the most common causes
of death in male adults and recognizing the symptoms may increase your
odds of finding cancer early, when it’s most treatable. “It’s
important to listen to your body and notice anything that’s different,
odd, or unexplainable,” Said Dr. Jacques Txuj Ci Moua of
Catawba Valley Family Medicine – Northeast Hickory. “All too often men wait as long as possible before seeing a doctor
for pain or another worrisome symptom, but this waiting around could lead
to worse complications or late diagnoses.” Therefore, it’s
imperative for men (and for the women with important men in their lives)
to learn what symptoms are potentially serious in order to seek care earlier,
rather than later. Here are 12 concerning symptoms that the
American Cancer Society says that no man should ignore:
Unintended Weightloss: Unintentionally losing 10 pounds or more happens
most often with cancers of the
Fever: Sometimes cancer can affect the immune system, making it harder
for the body to fight infection that causes fever. It can also be an early sign of
- Fatigue: Extreme tiredness that doesn’t get better with rest may
be a symptom of several different cancer types including leukemia, colon
cancer, or stomach cancer.
Bone cancer or
testicular cancer may cause pain. A headache that does not go away or get better with treatment
may be a symptom of a
Skin Changes: Any
wart, mole, or freckle that changes color, size, or shape, or that loses
its sharp border should be checked for
melanoma or other types of skin cancer. Other skin changes that can be symptoms
of cancer include darker looking skin, yellowish skin and eyes (jaundice),
reddened skin, itching, or excessive hair growth.
Changes in Bowel or Bladder Habits: Long-term constipation, diarrhea, or
a change in size of the stool may be a sign of colon or rectal cancer.
Pain when passing urine, blood in the urine, or a change such as needing
to go more or less often than usual could be related to
Sores that Resist Healing:
Skin cancers may bleed and look like sores that don’t heal. A long-lasting sore
in the mouth could be an
oral cancer, especially in people who smoke, chew tobacco, or often drink alcohol.
Sores on the genital area may either be signs of infection or an early cancer.
- White Spots in the Mouth: White patches inside the mouth and white spots
on the tongue may be leukoplakia. Leukoplakia is a pre-cancerous area
that’s caused by frequent irritation. It’s often caused by
smoking or other tobacco use and can become mouth cancer if not treated.
Unusual Bleeding: Coughing up blood may be a sign of lung cancer. Blood
in the stool (which can look like very dark or black stool) could be a
sign of colon cancer. Blood in the urine may be a sign of bladder or
A Lump: Many cancers can be felt through the skin. These cancers occur
mostly in the breast,
testicle, lymph nodes (glands), and the
soft tissues of the body. Some breast cancers show up as red or thickened skin rather than a lump.
Indigestion or Trouble Swallowing: Problems that don’t go away may
be signs of cancer of the esophagus, stomach, or
Nagging Cough or Hoarseness: A cough that does not go away may be a sign
of lung cancer. Hoarseness can be a sign of cancer of the voice box (larynx) or
Dr. Moua reminds us “Certain symptoms should prompt a visit to the
doctor, not because cancer is likely, but because it should be ruled out
or diagnosed early if it is present.” If you are experiencing any
of the symptoms above please consult with your primary care physician.
To make an appointment with Dr. Moua of
Catawba Valley Family Medicine –Northeast Hickory located at 2386 Springs Rd. NE call 828.256.2112.