Cancer symptoms in men can sometimes be overlooked because they might seem minor or related to other conditions. Here are key signs to watch for, as advised by medical professionals:
Difficulty Urinating: Persistent trouble with urination, blood in urine or semen, or unexpected erectile dysfunction could point to prostate cancer. As Moshe Shike, MD, at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center notes, early detection is crucial.
Testicular Changes: Men should monitor their testicles for changes in size, swelling, heaviness, or lumps. These could indicate testicular cancer, particularly in young and middle-aged men, according to Maurie Markman, MD, at Cancer Treatment Centers of America.
Skin Changes: Men over 50 face a higher risk of dying from skin cancer than women. Changes in moles or spots, especially if they’re irregularly shaped, dark, or multi-colored, should be checked immediately. Early detection of melanoma, a serious skin cancer, is crucial.
Mouth Sores or Pain: Persistent sores, pain, white or red patches on the gums or tongue, or jaw numbness can be signs of mouth cancers. Smokers and tobacco users are at higher risk, says Dr. Markman.
Chronic Coughing: A cough lasting more than three weeks, especially without cold or allergy symptoms, might indicate lung cancer. Leukemia can also present with similar symptoms.
Blood in Stool: While it could be hemorrhoids, it’s also a symptom of colon cancer. Regular screening is important, especially since colon cancer is becoming more common in younger adults.
Stomach Pain or Nausea: Persistent stomach cramps or constant nausea should not be ignored. They could be signs of leukemia or gastrointestinal cancers like esophageal, liver, pancreatic, or colorectal cancer.
Frequent Fevers or Infections: Regularly getting sick or feverish can be an early sign of leukemia, which weakens the body’s infection-fighting capabilities.
Difficulty Swallowing: Persistent sore throat or difficulty swallowing could indicate throat, stomach, or lung cancer.
Excessive Bruising: Unusual bruising, especially in unexpected places like hands or fingers, can be a symptom of leukemia.
Unexplained Weight Loss: Sudden weight loss without trying, especially if you usually have a good appetite, can be a sign of various cancers including leukemia, lymphoma, esophageal, pancreatic, liver, and colon cancers.
Persistent Fatigue: Feeling tired every day for an extended period or experiencing unusual shortness of breath could be a sign of leukemia or lymphoma.
Chronic Headaches: Frequent headaches, particularly if you don’t normally have them, might indicate a brain tumor.
If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s essential to consult a doctor for a proper diagnosis and timely treatment.