What Is Cancer? : What It Means To Have Cancer
What Is Cancer: The human body is made up of millions of cells. Each and every cells need to grow and divide following the rules and norms of cell division. Whenever a cell decide to break the rule and starts behaving abnormally, the end result is called cancer. Cancer can occur in any part of the body and it is responsible a high number of death globally in women, men, young and old. This post will expose all the facts about cancer in Nigeria.
What Is Cancer Prevalence In Nigeria?
One of the facts about cancer in Nigeria is the widespread and alarming rate at which people are developing cancer. This is due to the exposure to the various risk factors especially in the urban centers. It is estimated that not less than 8 million people died of cancer globally in 2015 alone.
What is Cancer: How Does Cancer Starts?
Cancer occurs when a group of abnormal cells starts growing against the normal rule of cell division. The abnormal cells can spread to other parts of the body through the blood and lymph system. The buildup of this abnormal cells form a tumor though not all tumor are cancerous.
Cancer can start in the blood, lungs, breast, colon and other parts of the body. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 24million people live with cancer globally with 12.5% of all deaths, this is estimated to even get higher in the future.
What Is Cancer?: Likely Cancer Causes
- Lifestyle: the cause of cancer sometimes can be as a result certain unhealthy lifestyle that exposes your body to carcinogens.
- Environmental Factor: exposure to toxins, radiation and some other dangerous industrial chemical compounds could trigger abnormality in the body.
- Genes: genetics can also play a key role in developing cancer. This is the reason why certain cancers are common in different part of the world.
- Age: cancer is common among the aging population, though, it can occur at any age.
What Is Cancer Risk Factors
The following factors may increase your chance of developing cancer:
- Unhealthy diet
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Chronic infections that are related to cancer
- Exposure to carcinogens in the environment
- Certain cancer treatments may also lead to another type of cancer
What Is Cancer? : The Categories of Cancer
Cancer can be classified into different categories depending on the primary source or where it starts from. The common categories are:
- Carcinoma: this kind of cancers is always tag with the part of the body being affected or where it starts from.
- Sarcoma: this category is usually found in the supporting tissues.
- Leukemia: is commonly related to the blood or bone marrow
- Central nervous system cancers: are found in the spinal cord or the brain.
What Is Cancer? : Different Types of Cancers
There are numerous types of cancers but here are the common types:
Breast cancer, Ovarian cancer, Pancreatic, Lung & Bronchus cancer, Bladder cancer, Colon & Rectal cancer, Kidney cancer, Leukemia, Liver cancer, Prostate cancer and thyroid cancer to mention a few.
What Is Cancer Likely Symptoms
The sign and symptoms of cancer vary depending on where it starts from, how and where it spread to and the size of the tumor. Likely symptoms include:
- Breast: presence of lump, reddish discoloration & nipple discharge
- Colon: abdominal pain, blood in stool, constipation & diarrhea
- Oral: presence of white patches inside the mouth or white spots on the tongue
- Skin: presence of wart or lesion
- Prostate: urination disorder, pain & erectile dysfunction
Other symptoms include swollen lymph nodes, fatigue, anemia, weight loss and fever.
How is Cancer Diagnosed?
Diagnosis of cancer may require your doctor asking you series of personal questions, physical examination and also checking of family history before carrying out series of tests. Diagnosis may require lab tests, biopsy or imaging procedures with the use of X-ray, Nuclear scan, Ultrasound, MRI &PET scan.
What Is Cancer Available Treatment
It is a well established fact about cancer in Nigeria that making a decision to choose the best treatment option is based on the type of cancer, the location of the cancer, where it has spread to, age, general health and personal decision. The most common treatment options include surgery, radiation, chemotherapy and biotherapy.
Surgery can be used in diagnosing and treatment of cancer. Surgery is used to remove or reduce the tumor.
Radiation therapy is carried out by using high energy rays focusing on a specific area where the tumor is present. Likely side effects include nausea, fatigue, and skin changes in the part treated.
Chemotherapy is done by using drugs to destroy the cancer cell. These drugs can be taken orally or by injecting the affected area. Likely side effects include mouth sores, hair loss and nausea.
Biotherapy is carried out by boosting the immune system to fight and stop the growth of cancer cells as well as stopping the spread. Biotherapy is done either orally or by injection. Likely side effects include skin rashes, fever and diarrhea.
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