Cancer is treatable only when it is identified in its initial stages. Once cancer metastasizes, the treatment methods are directed towards relieving the painful symptoms of cancer and limiting its progress. The treatment methods are long term, and the affected individual undergoes several physical and psychological changes through the course of treatment. It is a difficult time for the patient and their family as the individual’s health deteriorates gradually.
As the disease progress, there is a decline in the patient’s ability to perform daily activities, and it becomes imperative to have around-the-clock care for the individual. Cancer caregivers are those individuals who help the patient deal with cancer and help patients in their endeavor to try and lead a normal life. Cancer caregivers can be spouses, family members, or even close friends. One can even hire professional cancer caregivers for this purpose.
Here are some effective ways in which one can become an expert cancer caregiver for the patient:
With the advent of technology and discoveries in medical science, the world’s mortality rate has declined considerably. However, there are different diseases or ailments, at times the cause of which is unknown, or maybe, the perfect cure for the disease has not been discovered yet.
Cancer is one such disease, that has claimed a lot of lives, and the chances of being completely cured of the same are quite thin. Though there are landmark discoveries that have helped contain the disease if it is diagnosed in the early stages, many times, the symptoms go undetected and a life is lost.
Today 1 in 5 women is detected with cancer, mostly breast cancer. The most common kind of cancer detected in women is Her2 breast cancer. It is of two types- Her2 positive breast cancer and Her2 negative breast cancer.
Her2 positive cancer is a more malicious one compared to the latter one. If the tests reveal Her2 positive, this indicates that the cancer cells in the body have the protein Her2 in large quantities. Her2, Human epidermal growth factor receptor 2, is already present in the breast, which is responsible for repairing the breast cells. Diagnosis of Her2 positive breast cancer indicates that the Her2 causes the cancer cells to mutate and multiply faster than they usually would.
Though this is a serious situation, it can be brought under control if the cancer is detected early, and is diagnosed with Her2 positive breast cancer. Here are some of the common treatments to cure Her2 breast cancer in its initial stages.
Chemotherapy– Chemotherapy is the first treatment people opt for after being diagnosed with Her2 positive breast cancer. Chemotherapy acts swiftly in shrinking cancer and is a popular way of ensuring that cancer wouldn’t return. Her2 positive breast cancer is usually treated with chemotherapy drugs such as- anthracyclines and taxanes.
Herceptin- Herceptin is one of the targeted therapies since it works by targeting specific receptors on the surface of the cells. Herceptin latches on to the Her2 protein and blocks the receptor and stops the cells from dividing and growing.
Lapatinib- This targeted therapy acts as a major treatment for preventing the growth of cancer cells. It blocks the signals in the cancer cells that allow it to grow and divide. Once the signals are blocked, the cells eventually die.
Perjeta– It is another targeted therapy that locks on the Her2 protein. It is administered in the form of a drip every three weeks, till cancer comes under control. This treatment is opted for when the breast cancer becomes metastatic.
As you know, your bladder stores the urine till you pee. The human urinary bladder is a muscular sac located in the pelvic region, just close to the pubic bone. The urine from the kidney flows to the bladder, in which, the muscles stretch by itself to store it. Abnormal growth of cells in the urinary bladder is called as bladder cancer. The abnormal cell growth leads to a tumor, and can spread to the nearby organs if untreated. Read about the bladder cancer signs that you should be aware of.
Symptoms to know
The most common symptom of bladder cancer is the presence of blood in the urine. Sometimes it will be visible through human eyes, but other ways during a microscopic examination. Other possible bladder cancer symptoms include:
â An urge to urinate frequently
â Difficulty to urinate
â An constant urge to urinate, but difficult to pass urine
â A pain in the lower back side of the body
â Urinating small amounts, but in a frequent manner
â Recurrent infections in the urinary tract
â Swelling in the legs
â Presence of pelvic mass
Stay aware of the risk factors
Although the cause of bladder cancer is unknown, there are certain risk factors identified by medical science researchers. Read it here.
â Smoking: If you are a smoker, be it pipes or cigars, or cigarettes, you are at a higher risk of developing bladder cancer. Smoking will cause the presence of harmful chemicals in the urine. The chemical substance that is added in the cigarettes gets excreted through urine normally. These chemicals may damage the inner lining of the bladder, leading to growth of abnormal cancer cells.
â Aging: Normally the average age of patients diagnosed with bladder cancer in the country is 73. You are at a higher risk of bladder cancer after 55 years of age. It is rarely seen in people below 50 years.
â Gender: Men have higher chance of getting bladder cancer than woman.
â Exposure to chemicals: If you are constantly exposed to an environment of harmful chemicals used in dying, rubber, print etc, you are at a higher risk of bladder cancer. The chemicals that get into your body will be excreted by the kidney, and it goes through the bladder. Gradually, the chemicals will damage the lining of the bladder.
â Chronic bladder infections: If you are continuously diagnosed with urinary stones or infections, or under continuous use of urinary catheters, chance of bladder cancer is higher.
â Intake of arsenic: Arsenic is an element found in drinking water. In case of continuous intake of arsenic, bladder cancer is possible.
How to prevent bladder cancer?
Here are a few ways to lower your risk of bladder cancer.
â Quit smoking
â Avoid exposure to industrial chemicals
â Avoid exposure to arsenic
â Drink lot of water, and hydrate your body
â Lead a healthy lifestyle with balanced diet and proper exercise
Usually, cancer affects just one part of the body. However, in the case of metastatic cancer, the cancer cells leave the primary site area and travel through the bloodstream or the lymph system to other parts of the body. The cancerous cells metastasize, spread to other body parts and form metastatic tumors. Metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer or NSCLC is one of the well-known cancers of this type.
Metastatic NSCLC is a life-threatening condition. It commonly results from the following forms of cancer: kidney cancer, breast cancer, bladder cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, sarcoma and so on. Since the symptoms of metastatic NSCLC do not develop immediately, it becomes difficult to diagnose and provide metastatic NSCLC treatments immediately. Also, it is quite difficult to identify the symptoms since they are somewhat similar to other health conditions. Some of the common metastatic NSCLC symptoms include the following:
Metastatic NSCLC treatments can be started once this cancer is detected and diagnosed. A doctor would suggest the following tests to diagnose metastatic NSCLC:
Once diagnosed, doctors may suggest the following metastatic NSCLC treatments:
Most of the colon issues are preventable. Everything we eat passes through the digestive intestinal tract. The lining of the large intestine, the rectum, and colon contains the waste, digestive fluids, bile acids, and fiber.
Since the inner lining of the intestine is bathed by chemicals in the food, body’s own hormones and secretions, and healthy and unhealthy bacteria. This impacts the health of the tissue.
Imbalanced and improper diet can cause several colon issues. Most of the colon issues are a direct impact by your diet. Hence incorporating the following home remedies can treat colon issues.
Eat more garlic
Having a clove of garlic first thing in the morning, can help fight many colon issues, colon cancer being one of them. Garlic has antibacterial properties that fights the formation carcinogenic elements in the colon. They help to enhance, repair, and reduce cell proliferation. Garlic is high in minerals such as sulfur, selenium, as well as plant chemicals such as allicilin and flavonoids that can be beneficial for the colon. Other food plants that have similar properties include onions, leeks, scallions, and chives.
Vegetables rich in antioxidants
The deep, bright colors of fruits, vegetables, herbs, and spices contain a wide variety of antioxidants. Examples of antioxidant rich foods include, kale, cranberries, carrots, apricots, cantaloupe, broccoli, spinach, pomegranates, avocado, tomato, apples, red cabbage, blueberries, sage, oregano, and rosemary.
Cook food in olive oil
Olive oil contains plant chemicals that help in reducing bile acid and increases enzymes that help in regulating cell formation thus improving the inner lining of the intestine and promoting healthy tissue formation. The antioxidant compounds present in olive oil help in fighting several colon issues.
Omega 3 oil
Omega 3 oil has anti-inflammatory properties that helps in decreasing the incidence of colon issues such as colon cancer. Omega 3 oils decrease the levels of pro-inflammatory molecules that promote colon cancer. Omega 3 oils are found in cold water fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, and cod. It is also found in flax oil.
There are several species of prized longevity herbs such as ginseng root that decreases the growth and proliferation of colon cancer cells. Both, Asian and American ginseng roots have properties that help fighting many colon related issues.
If you have serious colon issues, avoid highly processed food and most of all avoid red meat. Red meat is hard to digest and thus being in the digestive tract for a longer time can create toxins that can be harmful in many ways.
‘Cancer’ is one word that evokes fear in anyone’s heart because it is one of the biggest killers in terms of the various diseases that hit people the world over. As per various studies conducted by medical bodies like the WHO, cancer is one of the most common fatal diseases around the world. Cancer comes with various symptoms as well as treatment options depending on the types of cancer that the patient may be suffering from. Let us learn more about the kind of cancer symptoms and cancer treatment options that are available.
Cancer Symptoms for Women: Cancer can hit men and women in various ways, and for various organs. One of the most common forms of cancer for women includes breast cancer as well as ovarian cancer. The most common symptoms that will be seen in such cases include dimpling and rashes in the breast as well as visible change in the appearance of the same. Also, there may be bleeding from the nipples along with the appearance of lumps. For other kinds of cancer, the women may go through changes in their menstrual cycle along with sharp and acute pain in the abdomen as well as bloating, inflammation and pain in the joints. Women will also go through weight loss, fatigue and loss of appetite along with fever and chills depending on the progression of the disease.
Cancer Symptoms for Men: Men may typically experience the same symptoms as women when it comes to pain in the bones and joints as well as related symptoms like weakness, fatigue, appetite loss, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, fever and more. But for those who are suffering from conditions like prostrate cancer, they may even experience a visible shift in their sex drive and even other conditions like premature ejaculation or erectile dysfunction which will leave a significant bearing on their sexual relations and health. Pain in the abdomen and back as well as problems when it comes to urination will have an effect on the male patient too.
Cancer Treatment Options: Cancer is a disease that can be treated in a proper manner if there is timely diagnosis based on timely observation and reporting of the various signs and symptoms that may come with the same. The usual route that doctors and oncologists prefer for cancer is surgery which will help in containing and stopping the spread of the tumor by removing the growth as well as that section of the organ. Further, methods like stem cell transplant may also be followed for leukemia and other forms of blood cancer, while radiation and chemotherapy will generally be used so that the cancer cells do not grow after the surgery has taken place.
Other Forms of Treatment: Medical intervention and drug therapy as well as surgery and radiation are not the only forms of cancer treatment that can be followed. Leading a better lifestyle by cutting down on smoking and drinking, an overall healthier diet and exercise routine will help in ensuring that the cancer does not relapse.
Advanced or stage IV breast cancer is termed as metastatic breast cancer. This is when the cancer spreads from the breast to other organs of the body such as the lungs, brain, or even the bones. Although the cancer has spread to the bones and the lungs, the treatment is still carried out by the same breast cancer killing drugs. It has been estimated that over 250,000 women in the U.S are diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer annually. Another noteworthy feature of the metastatic breast cancer is that it occurs in people who have once undergone full treatment for the other three stages of cancer (1, 2 or 3). The people who fully recover from breast cancer can also get diagnosed with the metastatic version after a few months or years of their treatment. This phenomenon is called distant recurrence.
Symptoms of metastatic breast cancer
Metastasis is all about the spreading of cancer cells. Metastatic breast cancer signs are not only localized to the breasts but affect the parts of the body (which are possibly infected) as well. Most common symptom can be diagnosed upon self-examination. These may include lumps visible on the surface of the breasts or in your underarm, nipple discharge (the process of discharge of fluid from the nipples) when pressed or not, bone pain and fractures, decrease in stamina, cough, extreme fatigue, etc. Some people also experience Increased abdominal girth (this is a measurement of the distance around your abdomen), swollen feet and hands, memory loss, headaches, blurry vision, and the like.
Metastatic breast cancer treatments
Metastatic breast cancer can be treated by one or a combination of the following treatments.
Also known as endocrine treatment, this treatment includes, SERM (Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators). These compounds hinder estrogen from stimulating cells of the breasts. This is carried out by ingesting a pill orally. Side effects include hot flashes and uterine bleeding.
These are agents which reduce the estrogen levels by blocking the protein that’s responsible for estrogen secretion inside the ovaries. Side effects include bone loss and bone fractures.
These compounds block the impact of estrogen on the cancer-affected breast cells. These compounds are injected monthly. Side effects include hot flashes and pain at the injected site.
Sex steroid hormones
These include estrogens, progestins, and androgens. These agents are employed only in the third or fourth line of treatment.
This is the process of slowing down the growth of cancer cells. It’s done in a cyclic manner. A cycle is the amount of time required to carry out the procedure and letting the body recover from the side effects of the drugs used. A typical cycle lasts from three to four weeks.
There are a number of common colon issues, colon cancer being the most feared one amongst the extensive list of ailments. But the risk factors that are associated with colon cancer are more the reason to get proper and immediate treatment.
Rick factors that increase the chances include old age, a personal history of colorectal cancer or polyps, inflammatory intestinal conditions, inherited syndromes that increase colon cancer risk, family history of colon cancer, low fiber or high fiber diet, diabetes, obesity, smoking, alcohol amongst others.
In most of the cases the cause for colon cancer is not clear. The technical explanation states that colon cancer is caused when the healthy cells in the colon are courted due to DNA problems. DNA of a cell allows proper and regulated growth in the body, when this complex structure is corrupted, unhealthy cells start to grow even when they ae not needed which leads to cancer.
Many of the symptoms of colon cancer or any colon related issues for that matter may not be easily diagnosed, which is more the reason to check with a medical professional to treat the ailments at the early stages and curb the problem.
Some of the issues can be treated with medication, without the need for extensive surgery or treatment. But prevention is better than cure, this is true in case of sever ailments.