The most bad thing about lung cancer is symptoms that are hardly noticeable in the early stage. Great number of lung cancer patients was diagnosed after the disease itself had advanced.
Here we offer information of early symptoms and tips how to recognize them, and how can early screening help.
Cough or Cough that Won`t Stop
Beware of a persistent cough that is not stopping and also lasts longer than usually does. A cold or respiratory infection is associated with cough that lasts for 1-2 weeks. Persistent one that just won’t stop usually indicates lung cancer. One should visit doctor and do some tests, x-ray in order to determine if it is cold or more serious.
Chronic Cough or Change in a Cough
If one is smoker, need to carefully observe possible changes in chronic cough: coughing up blood or excessive mucus and frequent coughing with hoarse and deeper sound. Moreover if some relative/ friend have these symptoms, must visit the doctor as soon as possible.
Shortness of Breath/ Breathing Changes
Shortness of breath usually occurs due to blocking and narrowing airways by cancer as well by the fluid accumulated in the chest because of tumor. Therefore, being out of breath frequently may indicate a lung cancer. If it happens when perform activities that never made you feel breathless before, and should visit doctor right away.
Chest Pain or Pain in the Chest Area
If there is pain in shoulder, back or pain in chest often caused by a lung cancer- rarely is associated with cough. Inform your doctor about this, regardless of whether pain is constant, dull or it comes and goes. Chest pain, if it is lung cancer, is caused by metastasis to chest wall (pleura), ribs, or due to enlarged lymph nodes.
If there is wheezing or whistling sound that appears when breathing, inflamed or constricted airway may cause it. No need to worry because wheezing can be a sign of benign and curable health conditions, or asthma or allergies are associated with wheezing. Still if wheezing is prolonged and does not stop, must visit doctor, cause of probability of being a sign of lung cancer.
Voice Changes-Raspy, Hoarse Voice
If one notices that voice has become deeper, hoarse, raspier, must visit doctor right away. Still this can be associated with a simple cold, but if changes don’t stop for more than two weeks, then could be possible reason to worry. When hoarseness happens it is a lung cancer symptom, the tumor affects nerve that is responsible for voice box.
Weight Loss-Drop in Weight
Any other type of cancer as well as lung cancer cause rapid weight loss. This is result of cancer cells which use the body energy as well as body utilizes the energy derived from food intake.
Pain in back or other parts can be caused by lung cancer, which has spread to bones. During the night pain becomes more severe. This type of cancer can cause pain in shoulders, neck, arms, but this is rare case.
It isn’t always linked with brain metastasis. In some cases lung tumor pressures on the main vena-cava, vein carries the blood from upper body into the heart and it can result with a headache.
CT Scan/ Early Screening May Help
X-Ray is unable to identify early staged cancer. However, low-dose computed tomography (CT) can help reducing lung cancer mortality. Study involved 53,454 people with high risk of lung cancer and they were put on X-Ray and CT scan test. The results showed that low-dose CT scans win over X-ray when discovering lung cancer.
The people who are more prone to lung cancer disease are:
- Have smoked over the last 15 years
- Have a 30-year or more history of smoking
- Are 55-79 years old
But one should still consult doctor and see if low-dose CT screening is appropriate.
The content of this article, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual (person). Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.