Malaysia Healthcare Chronicles

5 Types of Silent Killer Cancers You Need to Be Aware Of

Some of you might be aware that cardiovascular disease holds the unenviable position of being the leading cause of death in Malaysia.

However, it is essential to acknowledge that cancer, too, stands as a formidable adversary and ranks as the most prevalent cause of death in the country.

In conjunction with World Cancer Day, our aim is to shift the spotlight onto five types of silent cancers.

These insidious cancers operate in stealth mode, lacking initial symptoms but harboring a potentially deadly nature.

Cervical Cancer

The symptoms of cervical cancer often manifest only in advanced stages. However, this slow-growing cancer allows sufficient time for diagnosis and treatment.

Initial indicators include post-intercourse bleeding, bleeding between menstrual cycles, fatigue, and vaginal discomfort.

Pancreatic Cancer

Diagnosing pancreatic cancer proves challenging and is often delayed due to its nonspecific symptoms.

Late-stage detection is common, as symptoms such as loss of appetite, depression, weight loss, indigestion, and severe upper abdominal pain may be mistaken for less harmful conditions.

Misdiagnoses like irritable bowel syndrome and pancreatitis can postpone crucial treatment.

Lung Cancer

The early diagnosis of lung cancer is intricate, contributing to its high death rate.

In the initial stages, lung cancer lacks significant symptoms, often resembling other respiratory issues like asthma.

Symptoms such as shortness of breath, cough, and bronchitis may lead to delayed diagnosis, emphasising the need for increased awareness.

Liver Cancer

Liver cancer typically goes unnoticed until it reaches an advanced, untreatable stage.

Early-stage liver cancer may exhibit no noticeable symptoms, making detection challenging.

Although many liver cancer patients remain asymptomatic, it is crucial to be vigilant for signs such as abdominal pain, appetite loss, weight loss, fatigue, and a feeling of fullness.

Colorectal Cancer

Commonly referred to as bowel cancer, colorectal cancer often evades early diagnosis due to a lack of noticeable symptoms.

Encouraging routine colon cancer screening is essential for detection and prevention.

Be mindful of symptoms such as changes in bowel habits, blood in or on your stool, diarrhoea, constipation, or a sense that the bowel does not empty completely.

In conclusion, understanding the subtle signs of these silent killer cancers can significantly impact early detection and treatment.

Regular screenings and heightened awareness are crucial in identifying these stealthy threats and enhancing the chances of successful intervention.

Let us collectively raise awareness and empower ourselves and our communities to recognise the signs of these silent killers and contribute to a healthier and more resilient society.

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