Anal Cancer Symptoms
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Anal cancer symptoms play a fundamental role in detecting presence of cancerous tumors in the anus. They may be some of the earliest indications of the disease and also display the growth pattern of cancerous cells. Many symptoms related to anal cancer have common characteristics with various other body disorders that are not necessarily cancerous. Thus, the diagnosis of anal cancer in the anus must be carried out by using contemporary and reliable techniques.
What are anal cancer symptoms?
Anal cancer develops in the anus in a gradual manner. The cancerous or malignant cells do not attack the whole of anal area simultaneously. They initially attack the mucosa and other cells and tissues present in the inner layers of the anus and grow to other areas after developing sufficient potential to metastasize.
Anal cancer symptoms may be different for primary and secondary cancer. Primary cancer of the anus is the one in which the malignant cells develop originally in the anus. They form cancerous tumors in the anus and spread to remote areas by the process of metastasis. They may also affect some of the vital organs like abdomen, lungs and bowel. The secondary form of anal cancer is the disorder in which the malignant cells develop in various different areas like the lungs, bowel, kidney, lymph nodes or blood and target the anus as the intensity of the abnormal cells increases.
Primary form of cancer shows symptoms that are directly related to the anus. Thus, anal infections, formation of lump or tumor in the anus, unnatural discharge or pus in the anal areas are some of the most crucial symptoms. Also, injuries in the anal areas may be the prime targets of the malignant cells. Thus, you must consult a physician if such injuries do not get healed by normal medication.
Symptoms of anal cancer are basically the warning bells to undergo a thorough medical examination. Whether the abnormality is cancerous or non-cancerous depends mainly on the outcomes of such medical tests. Digital rectal exam (DRE), positron emission tomography (PET) test and biopsy are a few reliable methods to diagnose and detect anal cancer. Through other tests like X-rays, endoanal ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, one can get an idea about the intensity and behavior of cells and the areas they have targeted.
Importance of anal cancer symptoms
Detection of the symptoms of anal cancer helps in planning the line of treatment in a better manner. It also enables the cancer specialist to experiment a few medicines and treatments on the victim to understand his response to the same. Also, the patient gets enough time to respond to the treatment and recover properly.
Anal cancer is more common in women as compared to men and is more frequent in people aged above 45 years of age. Frequent and severe abdominal pains, problems in smooth movements of the bowel and back pains are some of the other primary symptoms of the disease. Such abnormalities may prevent a person from leading a normal life and are thus, important to be diagnosed thoroughly. Itching in the anus, bad anal hygiene and diarrhea are some of the early signs of anal cancer and must be cured in time. Blood during the passage of stools, thin stools and rectal bleeding should be taken seriously.
Disadvantages of ignoring symptoms of anal cancer
Anal cancer has a tendency to metastasize. It is curable if the treatment is initiated right in the early stages of anal cancer. Early detection of symptoms should be taken very seriously. Fine needle aspiration biopsy and computed tomography (CT) scan can also be done to detect tumors right in the early stages.
Treatments of anal cancer are usually harsh and may cause an irreversible damage to the patient's body. Radiation therapies and chemical treatments are normally recommended when the cancer is already into the advanced stages. Surgery is the only form of treatment recommended when the cancer is in the developmental or initial stages.
Hence, taking the symptoms of anal cancer seriously will benefit the victim in undergoing the most moderate treatment and will help him to recover fast. Consulting the symptoms thoroughly with a cancer specialist right in the initial stages is advisable for proper and timely medication. Ignoring the symptoms might lead to complications in the treatment and give rise to severe disorders in the lungs, bowel, abdomen, digestive system or any other organs where the malignant cells may spread by metastasis. Chances of survival decrease considerably if the symptoms are ignored and malignant cells are allowed to develop without any considerable resistance from the body.
Anal cancer early signs and symptoms may vary from person to person and depend largely upon the intensity of cancerous cells. In some cases, the victim may show no noticeable symptoms of the cancer in the anus and the disease may get detected only in the advanced stages. Thus, one must undergo a thorough medical checkup to minimize the risk of being infected by the tumor cells. Adults should be extra careful about their health as the risk of being prone to the cancer increases with age.