Cancer Signs and Symptoms | Gleneagles Hospitals

Cancer Signs and Symptoms

8 Warning Signs of Cancer

It is important to recognise the signs and symptoms of cancer because an early diagnosis and prompt treatment of cancer can save your life.

Generally, warning signs of cancer may not necessarily be cancer symptoms in most individuals. However, if you do experience persistent symptoms and you are unsure about them, do get yourself checked by a doctor.

  1. Persistent cough, breathlessness, chest pain and hoarse voice
    • If you have a cough that has lasted for more than 3 weeks, breathlessness, chest pain or a change in your voice (hoarseness), please speak to your doctor so that it can be investigated. Read more about lung cancer.
  2. Changes in bowel habits
    • Changes in the colour, consistency, size, or shape of your stools for example diarrhoea or constipation for no obvious reason for more than 3 weeks.
    • Feeling of not completely emptying your bowel after you defecate. Read more about colorectal cancer.
  3. Unusual bleeding or discharge
  4. Lump in breast or other parts of body
  5. Changes to moles or a sore that does not heal
    • Please speak to your doctor if you notice the following in your mole: changes in shape or colour, starts itching, crusting, flaking, or bleeding and gets larger or more raised.
    • A sore that is not getting better over time, gets painful or starts bleeding. Read more about skin cancer.
  6. Difficulty in swallowing or frequent indigestion & abdominal discomfort
    • Difficulty swallowing.
    • Feeling full even without or with minimal food consumption.
    • Pain in the tummy or bloating for more than 3 weeks. Read more about stomach cancer.
  7. Itchy or yellow skin
  8. Weight loss and bruising
    • Unexplained weight loss.
    • Bruising and bleeding easily. Read more about blood cancers (leukaemia and lymphoma)

The above are general signs and symptoms of cancer. For more detailed information regarding signs and symptoms of specific cancers, please refer to the individual cancer articles available here.

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