Cancer is a class of disease that occurs when healthy cells mutate and become malignant. There are more than 100 types of cancers, each of which is classified by the kind of cell affected in the initial stage. The human body forms new cells replacing the old ones that die. But sometimes, the process goes wrong. New cells generate even when not needed, and old cells don’t die when they should. The extra bulk of cells form a mass called tumor which then mutate and become benign or malignant in nature, or to say in a common language – they become vicious and hostile. Cells from the tumor then invade the surrounding tissues and even spread to other parts of the body.
Symptoms and treatments of these cancers depend on the type of cancer and how advanced it is. There mainly are seven warning signs that may confirm the presence of cancer. These are as follows:-
• Changes in bladder habits or bowel movement
• Sour throat that won’t heal
• Unusual discharge or bleeding
• Lump in the testicles, breast or elsewhere
• Visible change in the size, color, shape or thickness of mole
• Nagging cough
The earlier cancer is diagnosed and treated, the better are the chances of one’s survival. There are a large number of cancers such as skin, breast, mouth, prostate, testicles, and rectum, which can be detected though a routine check-up or by examining the symptoms. While on the other hand, there are many which are detected and diagnosed after studying a tumor found in the body. As per National Cancer Institute, most cancers can fit into the below-mentioned categories:-
• Sarcoma: It starts in bone, fat, cartilage, blood vessels, muscle, or other supporting or connecting tissues.
• Leukemia: It starts in blood-forming tissue like bone marrow and aid to the production of abnormal blood cells in the whole blood.
• Lymphoma and myeloma: It starts in the cells of the immune system.
• Central nervous system cancers: It begins in the brain and spinal cord tissues.
The onset of disease is influenced by a plethora of factors such as age, gender, local environmental factors, diet, lifestyle, obesity, genetics, sunlight, tobacco, etc. There also are some causes which remain unknown. Many patients develop this fatal disease due to a combination of these factors. Though it has been see that it is often difficult to determine the exact cause of the onset of the disease.
The treatment of this chronic disease is based on the type of cancer and its stage. Usually, it involves chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. While there may be cases wherein the oncologists may decide to give additional treatment to the patient such as hormone therapy, stem cell transplant or biologic therapy.