A patient’s cancer journey starts when they first experience symptoms. The sooner these symptoms are identified and a doctor is consulted, the sooner that treatment can start – giving you a better chance of beating cancer.
It is important to recognise the following symptoms. If you experience ongoing symptoms over a period of 2 weeks or more that are unexplained and unusual, it is important to consult a GP as soon as possible.
Unexplained bleeding or bruising
Lumps or Swelling
Consult your GP if you notice any new unexplained lumps or swelling anywhere on your body. (There is a possibility of developing cancer almost anywhere in your body).
Try and keep track of how long the lump or swelling has been there, if it has grown or if it causes you pain or discomfort as this will all be important to the doctor in reaching a diagnosis.
If you have a new ongoing pain in your body that has been there for 3 or more weeks, you should consult a GP.
Unexplained severe tiredness
If you have any ongoing severe tiredness or fatigue that seems unusual, it is important to notify your GP.
Fever or infections
If you constantly have fevers or infections that seem unusual or unexplained and last a while, consult a GP. This is also important if you regularly soak your bedclothes with sweat at night.
If you aren’t trying to lose weight and have had the same diet and carried out the same amount of physical activity but have noticed a significant weight loss in a relatively short period, it is important to see a GP.
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms or anything new that is abnormal and has persisted for over 2 weeks, you should contact your GP at first instance. It could be the case that it is nothing to worry about but it’s important to get it checked by a healthcare professional, as it could lead to an early diagnosis of cancer or potentially another disease.