Cancer survivors share symptoms they noticed before diagnosis

Cancer grows silently
It is not until it is too late that cancer victims discover the symptoms. A small lump or a pain which are mostly the early signs of cancer are mostly overlooked partly because of the body’s ability to persevere and partly because these signs are associated with several other diseases.

This negligence provides a good opportunity for cancer to grow in us day by day to such an extent that it becomes difficult to recover without taking medication.

“It wasn’t diagnosed until the tumor was big enough to paralyze me”
“I have to answer for my mother, because I have been told that the cancer in my spinal cord was present from birth. It was not diagnosed until the tumor was large enough to paralyze me,” writes Amorette Kitsa on Quora.

Describing her journey as a young child, Kitsa writes: “My parents were understandably devastated. On top of their grief, they noticed that I was extremely bad at potty training. I was uncoordinated, clumsy, incontinent. I was taken to the pediatrician, who told me mom that all children develop differently and I was fine. I went home, tried to take a step and fell on my face. Mom got used to sitting me in one spot on the floor and found out that I hadn’t moved an hour later, which is obviously quite unusual for a child of that age.”

“My first memory of cancer was when I was at my grandmother’s house hanging an ornament on the tree and I turned to my mother and told her that my neck hurt. The next visit to the pediatrician was downright disgusting. I was told a finger was shaken in my face when I was lectured about how selfish I was,” she writes.

She adds: My parents decided they had had enough. They bundled me into the car and drove me to a children’s hospital two hours away, where terrified doctors took a myelogram. My spinal cord tumor was so large that the myelogram dye couldn’t even spread evenly around it.

Fortunately, I was matched with a brilliant young neurosurgeon fresh out of school. I received experimental radiation therapy that shrunk the inoperable tumor to something I could literally live with. He brushed aside the short estimate of my lifespan and asked my parents if they would buy his daughter some Girl Scout cookies. Doubtless my parents were concerned that I would be gone when the cookies came in. “Ridiculous,” he boomed. “Of course she will be alive. And I’ll buy her cakes when she’s old enough.”

And I lived. And he did.

His scout daughter, a few years older than me, is now a neurosurgeon herself. He pulled back to guide her.

“My husband became a man filled with inexplicable verbal rage”
Cherie Spillman Livingston writes about her husband’s diagnosis of pancreatic cancer: My husband was a big teddy bear of a man with a very relaxed, easygoing, loving personality and avoided any conflict.

Suddenly, in an instant, his personality changed and he became a man filled with inexplicable verbal rage, but only at home and only at me, but in front of our teenagers. We immediately started marriage counseling and the counselor said I wasn’t physically safe living with him, so after 20+ years of marriage I moved out of our home.”

Cherie adds: About 11 months after his bizarre behavior started, he called and asked me what to do – he was itching all over – and after ruling out any possibility of an allergic reaction, I told him to see our GP next morning. I was out of state for a family funeral or I would have gone with him.

“After the appointment, he called and told me what type of tests our doctor had run. Part of me knew that what the doctor was looking for was very serious. I asked him to move back home so we could face this together, and he did.” , adds Cherie.

He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

“An annoying dull pain in the middle of the chest”
Another Quora user writes about how a dull pain in the middle of his chest that he kept ignoring turned out to be thymic carcinoma.

The user says he was diagnosed with cancer during a pandemic when the country was on lockdown.

“An annoying dull pain in the middle of my chest? It was mild, it was pretty random that comes and goes unexpectedly, so I wasn’t too worried about it. Anywho, it wasn’t until a couple of months later that it started really bothering me, so I emailed my doctor, she ordered x-rays and blood work, a few days later she emailed me and said everything came back fine, no signs of a heart attack, and the X- didn’t reveal Is something abnormal radiating?

A month goes by and one night I couldn’t sleep because of the pain, it got worse, while I’m driving to work the next morning I decide I’m going to the emergency room and find out what’s really going on here. So more x-rays and more blood work, the ER comes to visit me in my room and tells me it’s not a heart attack, but they found a mass in my chest and I thought, that’s weird, how could one have grown so fast in just 1 month?”, he writes.

“They immediately did a biopsy of the mass, but the pandemic started a national emergency and the country was in lockdown, so I didn’t know the results of my biopsy for about two months. Finally, an oncologist contacted me and said I had thymic carcinoma, it had spread to my left lung and around my heart and has infected major arteries and nerves in that area and that it reached my lymph nodes and that treatment and surgery were urgent,” he adds.

“Blood in the pee can be a sign of cancer”
Stomach problems such as discomfort or diarrhea lasting three weeks or more, or blood in your pee, could be a sign of cancer, explains English GP, presenter and writer Dr Hilary Jones.

Blood during urination is a very common sign of bladder cancer.

According to experts at the Mayo Clinic, neuroendocrine tumors, colon cancer, lymphoma, medullary thyroid cancer, and pancreatic cancer cause diarrhea.

Diarrhea, in particular, is very distantly related to cancer. A layman’s perception of cancer is mostly associated with lumps and pain, but not a bowel-related problem like diarrhea.

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