Eight potentially fatal diseases present a particular threat to humans because, in their early stages, they have no serious symptoms. This is why they are called the silent killers. To protect your health, you need to be aware of them.
8 Silent Killer Diseases You Must Know
1. High Blood Pressure
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says approximately 70 million American adults, or one out of three, suffer from high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. This silent killer frequently goes unnoticed, sometimes for years. It increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. Protect yourself by checking your blood pressure frequently. If your reading is 140/90 mmHg or more, see your doctor right away.
2. Chagas Disease
Chagas disease is caused by parasites circulating in your blood. It begins with an the bite of an insect, often called the “assassin bug,” which lives primarily in Latin America. There are no symptoms in the early stages, but in its chronic stage, Chagas causes severe heart and gastrointestinal problems and can be fatal.
Diabetes is considered one of the top ten killer diseases. It is marked by high blood sugar which gradually damages all the blood vessels of the body, often for years before the condition is diagnosed. Diabetes leads to heart disease, kidney disease, loss of limbs, strokes, and loss of vision.
A million people a year die of hepatitis, approximately one person every 30 seconds. Hepatitis is caused by various hepatropic viruses. Hepatitis A and E result from consuming contaminated food or water. Hepatitis B, C and D are contracted through sexual contact, transfusions of contaminated blood, and during childbirth. In some cases, the disease can be caused by excessive consumption of alcohol.
Although women are most frequently affected, many men also suffer from osteoporosis. Sadly, people with osteoporosis are frequently not diagnosed until they experience a fracture. As the disease progresses, signs include loss of height, back pain, stooping and bone fractures that may occur with even a minor fall. Young and middle-aged women should consult with their doctors, and consider getting tested for low bone density.
6. Colon Cancer
Colon cancer is the third most common cancer in the United States, affecting thousands of people every year. It is a silent killer, because it usually does not involve pain until the disease is far advanced. With regular screening, colon cancer is highly curable.
7. Lung Cancer
The leading cause of death by cancer, among both men and women, is lung cancer. Fewer than ten percent of people with lung cancer live more than five years after diagnosis. Because of this poor prognosis, the best hope for survival is early diagnosis.
8. Breast Cancer
Breast cancer is one of the leading killers of women. Left untreated, malignant cells in the breast spread throughout the body. Women should have regular medical checkups, as early diagnosis offers the best hope of survival.
Although these silent killers come with few early symptoms, you can increase your changes of avoiding them by following a healthy lifestyle and getting regular checkups.