Let’s face it! Studies reveal that women are relatively more watchful and particular about undergoing regular as well as recommended health checkups and screenings. It might be in their inherent nature, but it has been observed that women are more willing to have symptoms looked into. Again, younger women have this tendency to ignore their cancer symptoms deliberately. The underlying reason is even more ghastly; some abide by a cultural conviction of their own that cancer is incurable and hence refrain from paying the doctor a visit. In other cases, the mere occurrence of certain symptoms strike fear into women and they tend to become hypochondriac. Let’s have a look into the oft-ignored symptoms.
This is one of the symptoms that women seem to live with effortlessly. They remain clueless about the fact that this bloating might be the first sign of an ovarian cancer. Pelvic pain and abdominal pain are amongst the other symptoms of ovarian cancer. If women feel full even if they haven’t eaten too much or if they face urinary problems like feeling an urgent need to go to the washroom now and then, then there might be chances of them having ovarian cancer. Again, temporary pangs of pain are likely to be more due to gastroenteric problems rather than cancer. But if the bloating is persistent for more than a few weeks consistently, it is wise to consult a physician.
For a good number of females, it stands out as a matter of glee and more so if they achieve that feat without working out much. But an unexplained and marked drop in bodyweight without any rigorous activity or low food intake can be menacing. Oncology experts suggest that unexplained loss in weight is necessarily cancer unless proven otherwise like an overactive thyroid, etc. Here, the doctor rules out the possibilities one by one before confirming the presence of cancer.
Unusual inter-period bleeding
Ignorance of inter-period or between-period bleeding is very common among premenopausal women. They are also likely to mistake a GI tract bleeding for a period. Inter-period bleeding can be the symptom for endometrial cancer while GI tract bleeding is the symptom of colorectal cancer. Endometrial is a more common gynecological cancer and in almost 75% of cases abnormal bleeding is the early sign.
Even if women do not perform regular self examinations, most know their breasts well. It is advisable to be on the lookout for lumps. Apart from that, redness of the skin, puckering and thickening of the skin can also be some of the symptoms of aggressive and inflammatory breast cancers. If rashes sustain over weeks women would be better off having them checked by the physician. It is the appearance of the breast which helps you determine whether women are likely to have breast cancer or not.
Now, reverting to the various risk factors and preventive checklist to abide by let us take up the most common cancers women have –
Age factors like whether the woman is above forty years of age, whether she was exposed to radiation or prior cancer treatments, hereditary factors, occurrence of menstruating before 12 or menopause after 55, etc. are some of the causative risk factors for breast cancer. Apart from these, if women have undergone any hormone replacement therapy, or consumed alcohol the risks of breast cancer are likely to be high. Preventive measures would essentially include cutting down on alcohol intake and taking genetic counseling or enrolling for chemoprevention studies.
Diabetes, early occurrences of breast cancer, exposure of your pelvis to radiation therapy, obesity issues, history of infertility, long term intakes of Tamoxifen or estrogen replacement therapy without progesterone are some of the risk factors associated with endometrial cancer. The preventive measures in this case would be attempting to maintain a healthy body weight, consulting your doctor regarding your hormone intake in case you still have your uterus, etc.
It is actually the awareness or will to be cured that would help you get over with cancer. The symptom may be deadly or the cancer may be aggravated, but it does not necessitate that the cancer cannot be cured or mitigated. Early detection and paying your body the desired attention is the key to overcome this blight.