For the most part, guys hate to admit when they aren't feeling well and need help. It goes against our perceptions of manhood and the ability to be independent and take care of ourselves. However, it is equally as admirable to take notice of your health symptoms and take care of them before it's too late. You'll be doing you and your family a huge favor by potentially saving yourself from more extreme health problems or even death. Read below for the top health symptoms you shouldn't ignore.
- Severe back pain–if you experience back pain akin to that you would experience after lifting a lot of weight, you shouldn't ignore this problem. It could indicate an aneurysm. Particularly troubling is an abdominal aneurysm, which is a dangerous weakening of the aorta just above the kidneys. If that burst, you die within minutes. A less threatening alternative could be a kidney stone, but it's best to get this symptom checked out.
- Sudden groin pain–if it feels almost like you've been kicked, it's time to go to the doctor. This could signify testicular torsion. Most men's testicles are attached to the body by spermatic cords and by fleshy anchors that attach to the abdomen. A rare congenital defect where these anchors are missing can result in the twisting of the spermatic cords. If this happens, then the blood flow gets cut off and can result in the loss of the testicle. However, if you catch this problem within 4 to 6 hours, then the testicle is usually saved. Another less severe possibility is the infection of the epididymis or the sperm storage facility.
- Severe stomach pain–if it feels like someone has punched you in the stomach or stabbed you with a knife in the gut, this could indicate three possible causes: appendicitis, an inflamed gallbladder, or pancreatitis. The solution to all three of these problems is the removal of the affected organ (except for the pancreas, which is usually irritated by a gallstone so the gallbladder has to come out for pancreatitis, too).
- Transient chest pain–a heavy ache in your chest that comes on suddenly but then goes away quickly. Otherwise, you feel fine. This could be indigestion or it could be a heart attack. It's best not to risk it since most heart attacks occur within 3-4 hours after first symptoms.
- Leg pain with swelling–deep vein thrombosis could be the culprit if you experience deep pain in your calf along with swelling. Unfortunately, rubbing the spot (which is probably what you want to do) will only make it worse. Doctors can dissolve the clot with drugs.
- Painful urination–if going pee is painful and your urine is rust-colored this might signify bladder cancer in the worst circumstances. Smoking is the biggest risk factor for bladder cancer, but if caught early, there is a 90% chance of fixing it. Doctors treat bladder cancer the same as most other cancers–chemotherapy, surgery, or radiation.
Overall, while it might be tempting to be manly and ignore your symptoms, it's not worth it in the end. Do yourself and your loved ones a favor and seek medical attention of you experience any of these symptoms.
recently named in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyer's In America, David Mittleman has been representing seriously injured people since 1985. A partner with Church Wyble PC—a division of Grewal Law PLLC—Mr. Mittleman and his partners focus on medical malpractice, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, nursing home injury, pharmacy/pharmacist negligence and disability claims.