10 Symptoms To Talk To Your Doctor About Immediately

Posted on November 7, 2008. Filed under: health, wellbeing | Tags: , , , , , |

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Some symptoms are worth an immediate trip to your doctor, even if they turn out to be nothing read this list and keep it handy so that you are ready/

This list originally comes from the Mayo Clinic compliments of Medical News Today, and it is well worth passing on to all:

1. Trouble seeing, speaking or moving

Numbness or paralysis on one side of the body, difficulty speaking, and blurred or decreased vision are classic signs of a stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA), a ministroke that sometimes lasts only minutes. More atypical symptoms are fainting, shortness of breath or sudden feelings of facial pain, tiredness or a racing heart. Women may have the traditional stroke symptoms less often than men but also may be more likely than men to experience atypical symptoms first.

(Also look for sudden memory loss associated with a headache or feelings of pressure in the head, feeling as if a knife or hot needle has been inserted into the head or as if an electric shock or lightening has gone off in the head – people report their symptoms in odd ways at times.)

For any stroke symptoms, immediate emergency medical care is needed. Quick treatment for stroke can reduce the risk of brain damage or other complications.

2. A sudden excruciating headache

A headache that comes on like a thunderclap, with severe, excruciating pain could be caused by an aneurysm, bleeding in the brain, stroke, blood vessel inflammation, meningitis or a brain tumor. All require immediate medical attention. In addition, a headache that follows a head injury or is accompanied by fever, stiff neck, rash, confusion, seizure, double vision, weakness, numbness or speaking difficulties is reason to seek care. (See above: headaches can be just that a headache brought on by stress of some kind, they can also be a symptom of something much more grave)

3. Unexplained weight loss

Losing weight without trying can be cause for concern. A doctor’s appointment is warranted for a loss of 5 percent of body weight in one month, or more than 10 percent in six to 12 months. Underlying medical conditions could be an overactive thyroid, liver disease, depression or even some cancers.

(At times you can lose weight just because you are busier, more stressed or eating something that burns fat, it is sudden and unexplained that are the key words here and it is dramatic weight loss in a short time.)

4. Any breast change

A doctor should be consulted about a lump, nipple discharge or distortion, itching or skin changes (redness, scales, dimples or puckers), persistent breast pain or a change in breast size or shape.

5. Vaginal bleeding after menopause

Vaginal spotting or bleeding after menopause may be caused by changes in vaginal tissue, which can become thinner and more fragile as estrogen levels decrease. In some cases, however, postmenopausal bleeding can be a symptom of gynecological cancer. A medical evaluation is important.

6. Change in bowel habits

Mild diarrhea that lasts more than a week, constipation that lasts more than two weeks, or unexplained, sudden urges to have a bowel movement are reasons to consult a doctor. Also on the list are bloody diarrhea or stools that are black or tar colored. These symptoms could result from infection, medication side effects, a digestive disorder or colon cancer.

(Also look for pain with no bowel movements, this can come on suddenly or manifest over time, it can mean a bowel obstruction and not all of them happen suddenly, especially in older people they can be preceded by months or weeks of unexplained bowel pain put down to normal constipation)

7. Feeling full after eating less

Feeling fuller than normal after eating less than usual could warn of gastrointestinal problems, ranging from indigestion caused by acid reflux to some cancers. If this feeling lasts for days or weeks, a physician should be consulted, especially if other symptoms are present such as nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain or bloating, fever and chills or weight changes. (See above)

8. Persistent cough

A cough that lingers more than a month, is affecting sleep or brings up blood or sputum, is cause for a checkup. A chronic cough could be caused by asthma, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a respiratory tract infection, chronic bronchitis or even lung cancer.

9. Sad or depressed mood

Feeling sad for weeks or months is a symptom of depression, a medical illness that’s treatable. Other signs might include a loss of interest in normal activities, feeling hopeless, crying easily, trouble concentrating, unintentional weight loss and thoughts of wanting to die.

10. Persistent or high fever

A doctor should be consulted when a low-grade fever (100.4 to 103 F) persists for more than a week. Fever can indicate a urinary tract infection or more serious illnesses such as immune disorders or cancer. A sudden high fever, greater than 103 F, requires immediate evaluation.

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