featured5 - Breast Cancer - 6 signs you shouldn't ignore Cancer Health 

Breast Cancer – 6 signs you shouldn’t ignore

Statistics indicate that about 25 to 35 per cent of women globally are known to suffer from breast cancer. It is believed that these cancer related health problems are a result of the unhealthy lifestyles of the modern woman characterized by stress, poor eating habits, irregular sleeping hours and late pregnancies.

Health practitioners specializing in breast cancer treatment are confident that if detected at an early stage, the disease is curable. Here are 6 symptoms of breast cancer that you should look out for to help with early detection.

 

#1 Hard lumps in your breast

It is recommended that both men and women should make it a point to self-examine their breasts as often as possible. A presence of a hard and painless lump in either or both of your breasts means it is time for you to get amammography done.

 

#2 Aslight hardening in an area of your breast

This mainly presents itself by some sort of hardening in only one area of your breast which ends up feeling different from the rest of the breast. When you notice the onset of such a symptom don’t ignore it, get checked out pronto as it could be a symptom of breast cancer.

 

#3 A discharge from yournipple

Generally, unless you are pregnant or lactating, your nipples should never have any form of discharge. So, if you notice any form of fluid or blood stained discharge coming from your nipples, then it may be a symptom of breast cancer therefore you need to see your doctor as soon as possible.

 

#4 A change in the shape of your nipples

This is a sign that you will definitely notice if you do frequent self-examinations on your breasts. Anytime you notice either a change in the direction your nipple is pointing or an inward pull in your nipple, then there is definitely a problem. Normally, healthy nipples always face outwards.

 

#5 Achange in the texture of the skin on your breasts

In normal circumstances, the texture of the skin around your breast is meant to be flexible and soft. Therefore, any changes in this texture is an indication ofa warning sign. When your skin starts feeling thick and hard, then it’s time to consult a health practitioner.

 

#6 Knots forming in your arm pits

Generally, the human body has lymph nodes under the armpits which often get inflamed during an infection. However, if you notice the presence of slightly hard knots under your armpits that are painful to touch, then this could be a sign of breast cancer.

info3 - Breast Cancer - 6 signs you shouldn't ignore
Image source: cansa.org.za

Oncologists agree that the best way to detect breast cancer is to ensure that you get your regular breast examinations. Most of it can be done through self-examination but it is often advisable to visit a health practitioner.

We will share more about self-examination in our next post.

Please share your thoughts about this article with us.

featured4 - Lung Cancer - 7 symptoms you shouldn't ignore Cancer Health Research 

Lung Cancer – 7 symptoms you shouldn’t ignore

Lung cancer is one of the major global health problems that has plagued humanity owing to the many risk factors that are present in the environment. All inhaled air always ends up in the lungs therefore exposing this vital organ to cancerous cells which may result from inhaling carcinogenic fumes caused by pollution in the air.

Research however shows that early diagnosis increases the possibility of successful treatment and it is for this reason that we felt it fit to share this article. Take a look at these 7 symptoms of lung cancer that you shouldn’t ignore. Please note that when they present on their own, there is nothing to worry about but when in combination, be sure to visit a health facility to get checked out.

 

dt 161006 lung cancer 800x600 - Lung Cancer - 7 symptoms you shouldn't ignore
Image source: medscape.com

#1 Apersistent cough

A never ending cough that keeps getting worse is a cause of concern. This is usually one of the most common symptoms of lung cancer which is presented by coughing up of blood and a rust-coloredphlegm. When you see these symptom, visit your doctor immediately.

 

#2 A shortness of breath

A persistent shortness of breath is also among the possible symptoms of lung cancer. In most cases, when it comes to lung cancer, shortness of breath could be caused by a tumor that is blocking a major airway or a fluid accumulation in the lungs. If your frequent shortness of breath starts being a concern, be sure to visit your doctor immediately.

 

#3 Hoarseness in your voice

Do you keep noticing changes in your voice presented by frequent hoarseness or sounding high-pitched? This could be a symptom of lung cancer. Be sure to have your voice checked out by your doctor should you notice such changes.

 

#4 Chronic bronchitis

Often, if you notice the kind of chronic bronchitis that keeps recurring, it may be a symptom of lung cancer. Chronic bronchitis is often characterized by a never ending cough, frequent shortness of breath, fevers, chills and chest discomfort. Be sure to have this checked out by your doctor should you notice the symptoms.

 

#5 Chest pains

Chest pains that keep getting worse and worse may be a symptom of lung cancer. Whenever you experience a sharp pain in your chest every time you breathe in deeply, laugh or cough, then it is time to see your doctor.

 

#6 Anunexplained weight loss

We often find ourselves losing weight for one reason or the other so this should not scare you too much. However, losing weight for no apparent reason or an unexplained reason is one of the first symptoms of lung cancer. So if you notice a sudden loss of about 10 pounds yet you did not make an effort to lose it then it’s time to consult your doctor immediately.

 

#7 Bone pain

Frequent bone pain which is characterized mostly by pain in the back is a possible sign of lung cancer. Often people cannot differentiate between muscle pain and bone pain so it is important to know that bone pain tends to get worse with body movement as well as at night.

Be sure to be on the lookout if these symptoms come in combination.

featured3 - Health - How to determine your cancer risk Cancer Health Research 

Health – How to determine your cancer risk

The media today especially the internet has made people too anxious about their risk of exposure to cancer. When you search the internet, almost every tech device or manufactured consumer product has been listed as a possible risk element for cancer. As a media consumer, how can you tell what’s legit info and what’s not?

Through this article, we seek to create some perspective by helping you understand what cancer risk actually is and how it is measured.

 

What is cancer risk?

In research, when a scientist uses the term “risk”, he/she issimply talking about probability. This is basically the chance that a particular thing or event may occur, but it is not guaranteed that it will actually occur. In cancer research,a lot of the focus is usually put on studying large groups of people with the aim of determining the probability that any one individual or a category of individuals will develop cancer over a certain period of time. The research will also seek to establish the characteristics or behaviors that are associated with the increase or decrease in the risk of developing cancer.

 

This is how risk is expressed

Risk is categorized into two – absoluterisk and relative risk.

 

Absolute risk

Absolute risk is the actual numeric probability that an individual or group of individuals will develop cancer over a specified duration of time e.g. within the next five years, by the age of 55, by the age of 75 or during the course of their lifetime. One instance of absolute risk is the statistic that indicates that at least 16 menin every group of 100 men are going to develop prostate cancer in the course oftheir lifetime.

 

Relative risk

Relative risk on the other hand compares in terms of ratio and not absolute values. It will focus on the relationship between the specific risk factors and the specific type of cancers, focusing on comparing certain traits experienced within a group of people vis a vis the number of cancers that exist within that group and vice versa. In simpler terms, if we take lung cancer as an example, risk of lung cancer will be expressed in this way – People who smoke are 23 times likelier to contract lung cancer as compared to people who do not smoke. This therefore means that for people who smoke, the relative risk of lung cancer is 23.

Risk is determined through research and not guessing. So, the next time you come across some piece of information on the internet referring to your cancer risk, be sure to do a little bit of extra digging before you unnecessarily make life altering decisions.

info2 - Health - How to determine your cancer risk
Image source: eufic.org
featured2 - These are the 5 key NCI research areas Cancer Health Research 

These are the 5 key NCI research areas

The National Cancer Institute has a goal of sustaining the progress it has had so far against cancer and this requires continuous advances in cancer research.This includes more studies on the biology of cancer cells to the study of thehuman population.

Here are the 5 key NCI research areas currently. We would like to point out that the NCI is involved in more research areas but we felt that theseare the most significant.

 

#1 Cancer Biology Research

This research area aims at increasing the body of knowledge through having more studies to understand the differences between cancer cells and normal cells. This has been a critical step especially in the progress that has been recorded in the fight against cancer.

 

#2 Cancer Genomics Research

This research are aims at investigating the genetic foundations of cancer with the overall goal of improving the level of understanding of cancer biology. It is precisely this that has led to discovery of new methods of diagnosing and treating various cancers.

 

#3 Research on Causes of Cancer

For a long time, there has been an urgent need to understand exposures and risk factors that cause cancer. In addition to this, there has been a need to identify specific genetic abnormalities associated with cancer. Research in this area has led to tremendous improvement in the reduction of some exposures and counteringsome of their harmful effects.

 

#4 Cancer Diagnosis Research

The ability to treat cancer starts at the point of being able to accurately diagnose the disease. This is made possible through efficient and effective diagnostic tools that enable the best decision making during all stages of cancer treatment and care. This is precisely the reason why research and development of better testing and imaging tools is crucial.

 

#5 Cancer Screening and Early Detection Research

The earlier cancer is detected the higher the chances of being able to treat it. It is for this reason that NCI has allocated significant resources on research to improve screening and early detection of the disease.

 

 

The fact that NCI has taken up the task of confronting cancer which is one of the greatest global burdens is commendable. The world owes a debt of gratitude to each and every individual playing one role or the other in the fight against cancer.

We would love your feedback on this article.

featured1 - Cancer - 6 types of oncologists you should know Cancer Health Research 

Cancer – 6 types of oncologists you should know

I bet you know that oncology is the study of cancer. This therefore means thatan oncologist is a doctor responsible for treating cancer. In most typical cases, the oncologist is the one who gives the official diagnosis, then offers the patient care and treatment, once it has been confirmed that the diagnosis is cancer.

The field of oncology has been classified in 3 main areas namely: Medical, surgical and radiation oncology. Below are the types of oncologists you should know if you are intending to visit a health facility to get checked out.

 

A medical oncologist:This is the health practitioner responsible for treating cancer. Medical oncologists mostly use medication which include chemotherapy and other targeted therapies to treat or manage cancer.

 

A surgical oncologist:This is a health practitioner who removes the cancerous tumor and nearby damaged tissue in a cancer patient through surgery. They are also responsible for performingother types of biopsies.

 

A radiation oncologist:This is a health practitioner responsible for treating cancer using radiation therapy.

 

A gynecologic oncologist:This is a health practitioner who specializes in treating gynecologic cancers such as cervical and uterine cancer.

 

A pediatric oncologist:This is a health practitioner who specializes in treating cancer in children. Certain types of cancers such as leukemia, Ewing’s sarcomaand osteosarcoma are known to commonly occur in children and teenagers therefore it is the pediatric oncologist who will be called in. In some case, these cancers occur in adults and some of them have been known to seek help from a pediatric oncologist.

 

A hematologist-oncologist: This is ahealth practitioner who specializes in diagnosing and treating blood cancers, such as myeloma, leukemia and lymphoma.

 

In most cases, a patient will always be treated by a team of oncologists with different specializations because cancer often requires a combination of treatments in order to increase the possibility of success. This always involves combining surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

We trust this article has been helpful. Please share your thoughts with us.

 

info1 - Cancer - 6 types of oncologists you should know
Infographic by: pm360online.com