Cancer is caused by cells in a specific part of the body reproducing uncontrollably, according to the NHS.
These cancerous cells can destroy the healthy tissues surrounding them, which includes organs.
More than a third of people will develop cancer at some point in their lifetime, it added.
Change in bowel habits
You should speak to a GP if you’ve had a change in bowel habits, said the NHS.
The symptom could include finding blood in your stool, having diarrhoea, or having constipation for no apparent reason.
An unexplained pain in the stomach or persistent bloating should also be seen by a GP.
You only need to speak to a doctor if the change in bowel habit has lasted more than a few weeks, it added.
Any signs of unexplained bleeding should be seen by a doctor, said the NHS.
That includes finding blood in your urine, when you cough, or when you vomit.
Vomiting blood could be a warning sign of oesophageal cancer or stomach cancer.
Prostate cancer symptoms include finding blood in your urine.
Any unusual changes to a mole could be a sign of skin cancer.
“See your GP if you have a mole that has an irregular or asymmetrical shape, or has an irregular border with jagged edges,” said the NHS.
If the mole has more than one colour, or is bigger than 7mm, it should also be seen by a doctor.
Similarly, speak to a GP if the mole is itchy, crusting or bleeding.
Unexplained weight loss is a common sign of cancer, although it can also happen after a stressful event.
“It’s normal to lose a noticeable amount of weight after the stress of changing jobs, divorce, redundancy or bereavement,” said the NHS.
“Your body weight can regularly fluctuate, but the persistent, unintentional loss of more than 5 per cent of your weight over 6 to 12 months is usually a cause for concern.”
Around 40 per cent of all cancer patients said they had unexpected weight loss when first diagnosed with the condition, said medical website Cancer.Net.
A persistent cough could also be a common warning sign of lung cancer, although it could also be caused by a cold or the flu.
If the cough won’t go away, or gets worse at certain points throughout the day, you should have it checked by a doctor.
The cough is more likely to be caused by cancer if it’s accompanied by coughing up blood, or feeling short of breath.
A cough could also be caused by smoking, heartburn, allergies, or some infections.
Published at Sat, 27 Oct 2018 16:10:00 +0000