While it’s good news that the overall rate of survival for those with cancer has increased in recent years, the American Cancer Society (ACS) says that the rate of diagnosis has risen as well. In particular, rates of new cases of melanoma, thyroid cancer, endometrial cancer, and pancreatic cancer all rose in 2019, the ACS says. Worse yet, due to the subtlety of certain cancer symptoms, many patients aren’t diagnosed until it’s too late. To help you avoid such a scenario, we asked doctors to identify some of the most common cancer symptoms that often get overlooked or ignored.
1 – Weight loss
Though you might be thrilled to see the number on the scale go down, if you’re not actively trying to lose weight, it could be a symptom that you’re dealing with cancer.
“Many patients I see present with weight loss of 10 or 15 pounds,” says Anton Bilchik, MD, professor of surgery and chief of gastrointestinal research at the John Wayne Cancer Institute at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California. “They don’t pay attention to it because they feel good about losing weight. The concern is when somebody’s not trying to lose weight, but are losing it anyway.”
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