Early Signs that Cancer is Growing in Your Body

11. Rectal bleeding or blood in stool

This is a common result of diagnosing colorectal cancer. Blood in the toilet alone is reason to call your doctor and schedule a colonoscopy.

12. Unexplained weight loss

Weight loss is an early sign of colon and other digestive cancers; it’s also a sign of cancer that’s spread to the liver, affecting your appetite and the ability of your body to rid itself of wastes.

13. Upset stomach or stomachache

Stomach cramps or frequent upset stomachs may indicate colorectal cancer.

14. A red, sore, or swollen breast

These symptoms can indicate inflammatory breast cancer. Call your doctor about any unexplained changes to your breasts.

15. Nipple changes

One of the most common changes women remember noticing before being diagnosed with breast cancer is a nipple that began to appear flattened, inverted, or turned sideways.

16. Unusually heavy or painful periods or bleeding between periods

Many women report this as the tip-off to endometrial or uterine cancer. Ask for a transvaginal ultrasound if you suspect something more than routine heavy periods.

17. Swelling of facial features

Some patients with lung cancer report noticing puffiness, swelling, or redness in the face. Small cell lung tumors commonly block blood vessels in the chest, preventing blood from flowing freely from your head and face.

18. A sore or skin lump that doesn’t heal, becomes crusty, or bleeds easily

Familiarize yourself with the different types of skin cancer — melanoma, basal cell carcinoma, and squamous cell carcinoma — and be vigilant about checking skin all over your body for odd-looking growths or spots.

19. Changes in nails

Unexplained changes to the fingernails can be a sign of several types of cancer. A brown or black streak or dot under the nail can indicate skin cancer, while newly discovered “clubbing”– enlargement of the ends of the fingers with nails that curve down over the tips — can be a sign of lung cancer. Pale or white nails can sometimes be a sign of liver cancer.

20. Pain in the back or lower right side

Many cancer patients say this was the first sign of liver cancer. Breast cancer is also often diagnosed via back pain, which can occur when a breast tumor presses backward into the chest, or when the cancer spreads to the spine or ribs.

Whether you are a man or a woman, it’s important to watch for any unusual changes in your body and energy levels in order to detect any signs of cancer early on. The sooner you notice there’s a problem, the sooner you can begin to take the steps necessary to promote healing within your body.

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