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Pancreatic cancer is known as the silent killer. It’s largely asymptomatic until it’s too late to successfully treat, which is why you should be particularly vigilant. Here’s seven early warning signs of pancreatic cancer.
1. Abdominal pain
Abdominal pain can mean many things. However, over 90% of pancreatic cancer patients experience some sort of abdominal discomfort. The pancreas is located in the middle of the upper abdomen, so if you get any persistent pain in that area, it might be a good idea to see your doctor.
Pancreatic cancer can form tumours, which block the bile ducts to the liver causing yellowing of the skin and discolouration of the eyes. If you notice any discolouration of your skin, it’s a good indication that your liver isn’t functioning properly, and it’s worth getting it checked out.
Most commonly, diabetes is a result of obesity and an unhealthy lifestyle. However, when it is paired with any of these seven symptoms, it could be an indication that something else is wrong. If you experience any diabetic symptoms suddenly, and lead a healthy life, ask your doctor to consider other causes.
4. Weight loss
Most forms of cancer cause significant weight loss, without any change to your diet. Cancers use up metabolic energy, and alter hormone production. If you notice any sudden weight loss, it’s worth having a check-up, as it could be anything from a thyroid problem, to Coeliacs disease, to cancer.
Bloating can be a sign of other health issues, like a food intolerance, poor diet or dehydration. However, when paired with other common cancer symptoms, it might be time to seek advice.
6. Stool changes
If you notice any discolouration in your stool, it’s important to go and seek medical advice, as this can be sign of many cancers. A block in the bile duct can often produce light coloured, chalk like stools, which could suggest problems with the pancreas or liver.
Blocked bile ducts can also cause issues with the skin, including patchiness, flakiness and itching. If you notice any rapid changes to your complexion, combined with any of the other symptoms, such as jaundice, the problem might be more than skin deep.
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Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins