Lung cancer takes the lives of over a million people annually but, if you keep an eye out for early symptoms, it does not have to be a death sentence. Those who are diagnosed with lung cancer early have a fifty percent greater chance to survive over someone that is not diagnosed until the cancer has spread in to other organs of the body. Here are some early warning signs to help you catch lung cancer early and beat it.
1. Laboured Breathing
Being short on breath or wheezing are not considered extremely serious symptoms, but if you are at serious risk of getting lung cancer, you should interpret your breathing as a warning sign that something else might be wrong. The shortness of breath can be caused by just about anything but, if you are at risk, have your lungs looked at as soon as possible.
2. Stubborn Cough
Having a persistent cough that ends up giving you a hoarse, raspy voice can indicate an issue with the lungs. Do not just pass off that cough as a symptom of a cold or allergies. Get it checked out by a doctor. If it lasts for longer than eight weeks and appears to have no apparent cause, there is a chance that it has to do with your lungs. Many patients find that the coughing is worse at night making them lose sleep and become fatigued. If you have any question about the severity of the symptoms, have a check done to detect possible lung cancer as soon as possible.
3. Losing Large Amounts of Weight
If you are noticing weight loss while you are not missing any meals or exercising, something might be going on. Cancer can cause a patient to have sudden weight loss. The body will actually be able to detect a problem before you can. Your body works hard to expend more calories and try to heal a tumor that keeps growing. Weight loss in cancer patients is usually unexplained and occurs when patients have changed nothing about their diet or exercise. In some cases, it will cause the body to waste away as it eliminates muscle and boy fat searching for sources of energy.
While a whistling sound when you breathe can result from asthma or allergies, it can also be associated with lung cancer. If wheezing persists, visit your doctor to find the cause of it.
5. Voice Changes
Your voice becomes hoarser and deeper or you notice any other significant changes in your voice. While hoarseness can result from a simple cold, if it persists then go to see your doctor.
6. Persistent Chest Infections
Infections such as bronchitis and pneumonia that don’t go away or keep coming back.
7. Chest Pain
If you begin to feel a sharp chest pain deep in your lungs when you lift something, cough, or laugh, that may be another sign. The pain is actually caused by the growing tumor pressing against nerve endings. If the lung cancer spreads, these new areas will be affected by pain. See your doctor to talk about anything you find wrong.
8. Hand and Finger Pain
Pain in the fingers is an early warning sign that is often overlooked. If you notice the skin of your palms becomes white and accumulates pronounced folds. This symptom is caused by the cancer causing changes to normal bodily processes.
9. Bloody Phlegm
If you are coughing up blood, or even just spot of rust-colored blood in your phlegm, it is likely that another serious underlying condition is present and should be checked out by your doctor.
10. Mood Swings
Extreme mood disturbances are associated with late-stage lung cancer as well. They will not likely be the only detectable symptom at such a late stage. If you are noticing many of these symptoms, maybe it is time to see the doctor yourself.
11. Frequent Infections
If you have a case of pneumonia or bronchitis that just will not go away, it is possible that lung cancer is causing it. Any infection that affects the airways and is extremely resistant to treatment might be caused by cancer. They occur because the cancer has caused a weak immune system that has been compromised.
12. Shoulder Pain
If a lung tumor has grown and is putting pressure on the top of your lung, shoulder pain will be present. Swollen lymph nodes, facial swelling, and general body aches can also present themselves at this point.
13. Weird Breasts
Abnormal development of breasts in men can be caused by cancer encouraging hormone secretions. Increased levels of estrogen triggers irregular breast growth.
There are so many signs and symptoms that point to the possibility of lung cancer. Get tested today and find out if it is at an early enough stage to be stopped.