April is also Esophageal Cancer awareness month

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Did you know that Esophageal cancer makes up 1% of the cancers in the United States. It is 3 to 4 times more common in men than women.  If you live in the US, your lifetime risk for developing this type of cancer is you are a male is 1 in 125 and if you are female it is 1 in 435.  Less than 15% of cases of Esophageal cancer are found to be in people younger than 55 years old.

So what are the risk factors of Esophageal cancer?

  • Smoking cigarettes
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Being obese
  • Having GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease)
  • Having Barrett’s esophagus
  • Injury to the esophagus
  • Exposure to certain chemicals and chemical fumes
  • History of other cancers

Here are the signs and symptoms of Esophageal cancer:

  • Difficulty with swallowing
  • Coughing
  • Hoarseness
  • Pain in the breast bone area
  • Chronic indigestion and heartburn
  • Weight loss that is unplanned
  • Vomiting
  • Bone pain
  • Pneumonia

If you have multiple signs listed above, please see your doctor, but remember it may be another condition other than cancer.

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