Lung cancer has no noticeable symptoms in its early stage. Namely, in 40 percent of patients who had lung cancer, the diagnosis was made after the disease had progressed in stage 3.
Early stage cancer cannot be discovered with chest x-rays. However, CT scans can be more successful in discovering lung cancer on time. People between 55 and 80 years of age, and all who have smoked within the past 15 years should make tests in order to prevent lung cancer or diagnose it on time.
Therefore, it is also important to know these 7 early symptoms of lung cancer, in order to prevent it before it’s too late.
In case of wheezing or whistling sound when you breathe, you should visit your doctor. These sounds can be a sign of various medical conditions which are benign and curable as well, or they may appear when the airways are blocked or inflamed.
Shortness of Breath
This is another lung cancer sign and it may be due to blocking and narrowing of the airways or a fluid accumulated in the chest due to lung tumor. So, if you are short of breath often when performing your daily routines, for example when you bring groceries, when you climb the stairs or you perform actions which didn’t make you feel breathless before, it is strongly recommended to visit a doctor.
Pain in the chest, back or shoulders
If you feel pain in the chest area, you should be careful since it can also be caused by metastasis on the areas, or enlargement of the lymph nodes or the ribs. You should visit your doctor regardless if you feel healthy or strong.
You should pay attention in case you suffer from a chronic cough, for it may indicate lung cancer. On the other hand, if the cough is gone after a couple of weeks, it is only a regular cough due to a cold or respiratory infection. If you cough out mucus it is mandatory to visit your doctor and make the relevant tests on your lungs and chest, like x-rays. Changes in cough may include: frequent coughing with hoarse and deeper sound, coughing up blood or excessive mucus, and in case you or someone else experiences them, consult your doctor as soon as possible.
One can also suffer from headaches if the lung cancer has spread to the brain. Though, not all headaches are linked with brain metastases. In some cases, the lung tumor can press the main vein which takes the blood from the upper part to the heart, and thus cause headache.
If you experience severe pains in the bones or any other body part, it may be a sign of a serious health issue, so you need to consult your doctor.
Cancer cells are using the energy from the body as well as the body uses the energy obtained from food, so it leads to rapid weight loss.