Cancer. Malignancy. Tumor. It is known by many names, but not everyone is aware of what goes on inside the body once someone gets diagnosed with this disease. In this post, we’ll present some facts that you need to know about cancer.
What is Cancer?
Cancer is a condition wherein the cells undergo changes that lead to uncontrolled growth and division. The manner of change depends on the type of cancer. Our body’s cells have corresponding functions and lifespan, which means that after they have served their roles, they undergo apoptosis or cell death. As soon as these cells die, they are often replaced by new ones. That’s the natural process.
Cancerous cells, however, do not have that capacity to stop dividing and die. What happens is that they build up in the body and use up the nutrients and oxygen which should be reserved for healthy cells. As a result, these cancerous cells end up becoming tumors that can cause the immune system to be compromised and affect other bodily functions. When they get worse, these cancerous cells may spread and affect other organs of the body.
What are the Different Types of Cancer?
In general, there are four types of cancer:
These cancers are those that often originate from the skin or tissues that cover organs.
Sarcomas are cancers that affect the connective tissues, including muscles, bones, blood vessels, and cartilages.
Leukemia is different types of cancer that commonly affect the bone marrow, which is responsible for producing blood cells.
Lymphoma and Myeloma
These types of cancers target the body’s immune system.
What are the Common Warning Symptoms of Cancer?
Some cancers can only be detected once they are in the end stages. One example of this is Mesothelioma cancer which, according to www.bergmanlegal.com, is often detected much later in a person’s life — critical exposure to the cancer-causing substance may have occurred many years back. Fortunately, many types of cancers can still be treated, provided they are caught early. Here are some warning signs and symptoms that you should be aware of:
Painless and Bleeding Sores
If you have sores that seem not to heal or respond to any conventional medication, have yourself checked immediately. More so if the sores continue to bleed while remaining painless, as they could be a sign of a mouth or skin cancer.
Lump or Thickening
If you notice a thickening or lumps in any part of your body, particularly in your reproductive system, it is best to have it checked as well, mainly if they are in breasts (for women) and testicles (for men). Breast cancer, once detected early in its stages, can be treated with an 85% success rate. Testicular tumors are also treatable when caught early. That said, you should regularly self-examine as you know your body best.
Unusual Bleeding or Discharge
If any of your body openings have abnormal bleeding or discharge, it can be an early sign of cancer. One example is notable or prolonged vaginal bleeding. You may need to undergo a Pap smear to see if you are positive for cervical cancer.
Changes in Bladder and Bowel Habits
Individuals who suffer from persistent bowel and bladder issues should consider having a check-up because this could be a symptom of disease in the prostate, bladder, colon, or kidney.
Changes in a Mole
Moles are normal. However, when a particular one changes in color, size, and consistency, you might want to have it checked, as it can be a sign of skin cancer, especially if it suddenly bleeds or develops into an open sore.
The success of cancer treatment often depends on how early it is first detected and what interventions were done to stop its growth. Luckily, advancements in healthcare have allowed oncologists to treat cancers aggressively and with a high success rate.