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Posted 05/24/2021 in Category 1 by Amelia Grant

5 Most Common Types of Cancer and Symptoms That Everyone Should Know

5 Most Common Types of Cancer and Symptoms That Everyone Should Know

Cancer is a serious deadly health condition. The different forms of cancer killed over 606,500 people in 2020 in the United States alone. Cancer occurs because of abnormal changes in your body cells. This leads to uncontrolled cell growth and results in the formation of tumors in different parts of your body. If left untreated, cancer cells spread to other bodily systems and prevent them from functioning in the right way. 

Cancer is a life-threatening health condition. But early diagnosis decreases the risk of death and serious complications significantly. For this reason, each person needs to be aware of common cancers and their symptoms. This can help you preserve the health and well-being of you and your loved ones.

Below are 5 common types of cancer and their symptoms. If you suspect you have one of these conditions, seek medical help as soon as possible. 

1. Breast cancer

Breast cancer is recently the most common type of cancer. It caused nearly 11,7 percent of all cancer cases in 2020. Breast cancer develops in the cells of the breast, usually in the lobules or the ducts. If left untreated, cancer can spread on the healthy tissues of the lymph nodes under the arms. 

The first and the most obvious symptom of breast cancer is breast lump and thickening. Your breast may become painful to the touch and swollen. The size and form of your breast can suddenly change. Other common symptoms include bloody or white discharges from the nipple. 

2. Lung cancer

Lung cancer is the second most common cancer and the number one killer among other cancers. This type of cancer caused almost 1,800,000 cancer-related deaths in 2020. This type of cancer begins in the lung cells and can affect your ability to breathe. 

At early stages, lung cancer rarely causes notable symptoms. The symptoms usually appear when the condition is advanced. For this reason, it is important to undergo an annual physical examination, especially if you are a smoker. The symptoms may include a chronic cough, coughing up blood, chest pain, shortness of breath, and hoarseness.

3. Prostate cancer

In 2020, prostate cancer affected nearly 1,414,000 people (7,3% of all cancer cases). This cancer develops in the small walnut-shaped gland called the prostate. This is a part of the male reproductive system that produces the seminal fluid and transports sperm.

The different types of prostate cancer can cause different symptoms. Some of them develop slowly and don’t cause noticeable symptoms, while others can progress very fast and cause serious harm. Advanced prostate can cause symptoms like blood in the urine, blood in the sperm, trouble urinating, and lower force in the stream of urine. 

4. Nonmelanoma skin cancer

Nonmelanoma skin cancer caused 6.2 percent of all cancer cases in 2020. This type of cancer refers to all skin cancers that aren’t melanoma. The most common nonmelanoma skin cancers include basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.

The symptoms of nonmelanoma skin cancer can differ depending on the type of cancer. However, some common symptoms include flat spots that are scaly or irregularly shaped, sores that don’t heal, wart-like growth that bleeds, and scaly red or purple itching patches.

5. Colon cancer 

An estimated 6.0 percent of all cancer cases in 2020 were caused by colon cancer. This type of cancer develops in the last part of the digestive tract, called the colon(large intestine). This condition usually begins as a small benign cluster of cells called polyps. Over time, some of them can develop into colon cancer. 

Colon cancer usually causes persistent changes in your bowel movements. This can cause a change in stool consistency, constipation, or diarrhea without a clear cause. Other symptoms include blood in the stool, abdominal discomfort, unexplained weight loss, and fatigue. 

The bottom line

It is important to understand that if you have symptoms that are similar to one of these conditions, this doesn’t necessarily mean you have cancer. However, if the risk persists, you need to visit your doctor as soon as possible to prevent serious health complications. Some of the symptoms mentioned above may also be referred to other serious health conditions. Visiting your doctor can help you preserve overall health and well-being.