File - Campaigns have sought to encourage women to undergo mammograms.
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Patients across the region are needlessly dying from treatable cases of cancer due to fear, taboos and a lack of knowledge about the disease, according to doctors.The problem is that many symptoms of cancer are non-specific, according to Dr. Nagi Saghir, professor of oncology at the American University of Beirut and director of the Breast Center of Excellence at AUB Medical Center.Many of the warning signs are no different from those of any other illness – such as bloating, fever, chronic pain, redness, inflammation, weight loss, bleeding, indigestion, and unusual bowel movements. The telling difference is that the symptoms of cancer tend to be persistent, which should be the first indicator to consult a doctor. Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in Lebanon, and prostate cancer is the most common among men.Ibrahim also pointed to a particularly significant delay in consulting a doctor among women who have ovarian cancer, which allows the disease to progress to an advanced and much more dangerous stage.
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