Canadian Cancer Society logo

Small intestine
cancer

You are here: 

Symptoms of small intestine cancer

Small intestine cancer is very rare. As a result, doctors often look for other causes of symptoms before they check for cancer in the small intestine. This cancer may not cause any signs or symptoms in its early stages. Symptoms often appear if the tumour grows into surrounding tissues and organs or if it blocks the small intestine. Other health conditions can cause the same symptoms as small intestine cancer.

See your doctor if you have these symptoms.

  • pain in the abdomen (in some cases, pain comes on suddenly and is severe)
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • weight loss
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • bleeding from the bowel
  • blood in the stool, or black, tarry stool
  • fatigue and weakness, which may be caused by anemiaanemiaA reduction in the number of healthy red blood cells.

In some cases, tumours in the small intestine can cause serious problems. These cancer-related emergencies need to be treated right away:

Stories

Dr Troy Harkness Finding new ways to treat drug-resistant cancers

Read more

How can you stop cancer before it starts?

It's My Life! icon

Discover how your lifestyle choices can affect cancer risk and how you can take action with our interactive tool – It’s My Life!

Learn more