"Warning Sign," a 1985 movie with Sam Waterston about a secret germ warfare lab in Utah, was mostly ignored by critics. They may have had a good reason to overlook that film, but disregarding other warning signs can be risky business.
Research out of the United Kingdom reveals that in one study, of the people 50 and older who experienced a potential cancer warning symptom — such as a change in a mole or unexplained pain — only 2 percent thought the cause might be cancer.
Even when folks acknowledged that the symptom might be "serious," they didn't think it indicated cancer. And only around 59 percent of those people had it checked out by a doctor.
Even though most potential cancer symptoms do NOT end up being cancer, failing to see a doctor to rule them out is still risky business.
Remember: Getting checked out leads to early detection, and that leads to better treatment and better chance of cure.
Stage 1 breast cancer's five-year survival rate is 100 percent; stage IV is just 22 percent. Non-small cell lung cancer's five-year survival rate for stage 1A is 49 percent; stage IV is 1 percent. So here's a list of potential symptoms that you should make sure to ask your doctor about:
• Unexplained thickening or lump in breast or elsewhere
• Unexplained pain
• Change in bowel or bladder habits
• Chronic cough or hoarseness
• Change in the appearance of a mole or wart
• A sore that won't heal
• Unexplained bleeding
• Unexplained weight loss
• Indigestion or difficulty swallowing.
If you act today, you'll have a better tomorrow!
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