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Early Cancer Detection

If you can't prevent cancer, the next best thing you can do to protect your health is to detect it early. Recognizing symptoms, getting regular check-ups, and performing self-exams are just a few ways you can do this.

Any of these symptoms may be caused by cancer or by other, less serious, health problems. If you have any of these symptoms, see your health care provider.

Breast Cancer

Lump or swelling in breast or underarm area, skin irritation or dimpling, nipple pain or retractions, redness or scaliness of nipple or breast skin, discharge other than breast milk.

Learn more about breast health services and resources available at Fisher-Titus Women's Health.

Cervical Cancer

Abnormal vaginal bleeding, bleeding may start and stop between regular menstrual periods or it may occur after sexual intercourse, douching, or a pelvic exam, menstrual bleeding may last longer and be heavier then usual, bleeding after menopause, increased vaginal discharge.

Colon and Rectum Cancer

Rectal bleeding, blood in stool, change in bowel habits, cramping pain in lower abdomen.

Lung and Bronchus Cancer

Persistent cough, recurring pneumonia or bronchitis, chest pain, often aggravated by deep breathing, weight loss or loss of appetite, bloody or rust-colored spit or phlegm, shortness of breath, wheezing, or hoarseness.

Prostate Cancer

Need to urinate frequently, especially at night, difficulty starting urine or holding back urine, inability to urinate, weak or interrupted flow of urine, painful or burning urination, blood in urine or semen, difficulty having an erection, pain in pelvic bone, spine, hips, or ribs.

Melanoma/Skin Cancer

A simple ABCD rule outlines warning signals of melanoma:

  • Asymmetry - one half of mole does not match the other half
  • Border irregularity - edges are ragged, notched, or blurred
  • Color - pigmentation is not uniform, with variable degrees of tan, brown, or black
  • Diameter greater than 6 millimeters: any sudden or progressive increase in size should be of concern
Learn More

The American Cancer Society provides basic information about cancer, such as what it is and how it forms, as well as the signs and symptoms of the disease.