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Lilo777's avatar

I'm worried that my mom has cancer?

Asked by Lilo777 (109 points ) October 21st, 2012

For the past 3 or 4 weeks now my mom has been complaining of being generally “sick” – she seems to keep getting infections, which can range from a sore throat to a fever, etc. Her glands keep swelling up. She has a headache and is nauseous constantly. She’s complaining of being “achy” and her joints hurt. The thing that concerns me the most is she is tired all the time. She can’t keep her eyes open, can’t make dinner because all she wants to do is sleep. She is 46 years old and I think she’s in general good health, but I’m kind of freaking out about this because I have had cancer twice, one of which was acute leukemia and it sounds like she has a lot of the symptoms I did. I do tend to think everything is cancer – I guess it’s just a fear – but I am REALLY worried so I guess I’m just looking for your opinions and advice… :(

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14 Answers

Judi's avatar

Has she been to the doctor? Is she over weight?
When I was 42 I had similar symptoms and realized I needed to get my diet and exercise under control. I lost a bunch of weight, hired a personal trainer, and now at 51 feel better than I did at 30.
I understand your fear. It’s only normal to be hyper sensitive to cancer.
Encourage your mom to see a doctor in order to set YOUR mind at ease.

wundayatta's avatar

I know it’s hard to see people we love feel bad. But I think we all have a tendency to think the worst, and really, when we don’t know anything, that doesn’t help. You should talk to her. Find out what she is thinking about. Encourage her to see a doctor. Or find out what she knows, if she has seen a doctor.

Coloma's avatar

Is she depressed? Depression can cause a LOT of physical symptoms, like fatigue, achiness, etc. Is she possibly pregnant? 46 is the peak of peri-menopause and more than one woman has found herself with another little bun in the old oven. She needs to see a doctor, encourage her to do so asap.

filmfann's avatar

What you describe could be a lot of things. I had Lyme disease last year, and I went through most of that.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Three to four weeks is a long time for anything like that. Sit her down and hand her the phone. Tell her she’s calling or you’re calling the Dr. The sooner it gets diagnosed the better, whatever it is.

Tachys's avatar

No need to jump to a cancer diagnosis so quickly. Keep calm and carry on. And get her to a medical professional.

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Nullo's avatar

I’d ease up on the worrying for a bit, until you get some work done. Those symptoms are fairly generic; it almost sounds like sleep deprivation (which it probably isn’t) or blood pressure issues, etc.

gailcalled's avatar

Together, these are serious and alarming symptoms. Insist that she see a doctor immediately. Why has she spent a month ignoring how she is feeling?

However, worrying never helps anyone. I know that sounds glib, but your mom’s passivity is the issue now.

JLeslie's avatar

Sore throat and fever are not typically cancer symptoms. She might have simply had a bad few weeks where she caught that horrific cold that has been travelling around the US, some congestion, cough, much worse than most colds, and lasts about 2 weeks, and then in a weakened state from the illness caught a second illness right after starting to get better from the first. Swollen glands are common when someone has a sore throat and cough.

She also could be depressed, which weakens the immune system. Or, have Ebstein Barr/chronic fatigue syndrome, or hypothyroid, HIV, or so many many things.

Don’t freak out, but after so many weeks of misery she probably should go to the doctor and get some things checked out. Make sure nothing is very wrong. They can do some blood work, and evaluate her aches and pains.

gailcalled's avatar

Fever is one symptom of both leukemia and lymphoma.

JLeslie's avatar

@gailcalled But, she had a sore throat and fever, which probably means she had an infection. I am not saying cancer is impossible, but it does not sound like that should be something the OP should panic about. I understand cancer could weaken her immune system overall. I do think it is time to go to the doctor though and just get some things checked if she continues to be in such a weakened state.

Shippy's avatar

I’m sorry you are going through such worry. I think it sounds like it could be anything. From Flu’ to an infection. The only way to find out of course is a doctor visit. Hugs to you. I hope it is something minor.

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