Cancer: raise awareness and act in prevention

2023-08-25 23:00:31

He cancer It is a disease characterized by the rapid and completely uncontrolled multiplication of abnormal cells, which spread beyond their normal limits and can invade adjacent parts of the body or spread to other organs, in a process called “metastasis”. The extension of the metastasis It is the leading cause of death from the disease. The primary tumor can arise in any organ, but the most common forms of cancer originate in breast, lung, colon, prostate, skin and stomach in that order.

Cancer is a serious disease, it can even be deadly. It seriously affects the quality of life of those who suffer from it and their environment. In addition, the health costs related to the care and treatment required by this disease are very high, given its high prevalence globally.

It is a multifactorial disease, conditioned by many causal factors. Although the incidence of cancer increases with age, most cases come from the interaction between genetic predisposition and environmental or epigenetic factors. Carcinogens are those substances or risk factors for which there is scientific evidence that they are associated with a higher prevalence of certain types of cancer.

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Los carcinogens are classified in physicists (UV or ionizing radiation), chemicals (heavy metals, aflatoxins, additions food, tobacco smoke, alcohol, arsenic, etc.) and biological (virus hepatitis B, HPV, among others).

Prevention is fundamental: It is presumed that between 30% and 50% of cancer cases could be avoided by reducing risk factors and applying prevention strategies.

The main prevention measures that have the greatest impact in reducing cancer morbidity and mortality are associated with a healthy lifestyle and are detailed below:

  1. Anti-inflammatory diet, full of nutrients and antioxidants, present in vegetables and vegetables. Consume of agua safe and quality.
  2. keep a adequate body weight
  3. Physical activity and good rest. Chronic stress reduction
  4. Contact with nature and moderate sun exposure.
  5. environments smoke free and minimal environmental pollution
  6. Reduce the use of tobacco, alcohol and other drugs
  7. Minimize occupational exposure in the work environments
  8. Prevention and timely and adequate treatment of infections.

Cancer morbidity and mortality can also be reduced through early detection and timely and adequate treatment. If diagnosed early and treated appropriately, the chances of curing many types of cancer are high.

Tini de Bucourt confirmed that she is cured of her cancer

The programs of screening and education of the population, in addition to timely consultation can save lives. The purpose of screening is detect evidence of a particular cancer or precancerous lesion in asymptomatic people. When abnormalities are found during screening, further testing should be performed to confirm or rule out the diagnosis and to refer the patient for treatment, if necessary.

Early diagnosis is key. When cancer is detected at an early stage, it is more likely to respond to treatment, which could increase the chances of survival and reduce morbidity. If the disease is detected early and care is not delayed, the lives of cancer patients can be significantly improved. He early diagnostic consists of three steps:

  • Education about symptoms and the importance of seeing a doctor if abnormalities of concern are observed;
  • Quick and timely access to clinical evaluation and diagnostic services
  • Timely referral of the patient to cancer treatment services.

In relation to treatment, the first and most effective step in cancer is to get the diagnosis right, since each type of cancer requires a specific treatment. Among the treatments we can mention surgery, radiotherapy and systemic therapy (chemotherapy, hormonal treatments, targeted biological treatments). To select the correct therapeutic regimen, both the type of cancer and the patient must be taken into account.

Completion of the treatment protocol in a defined period is important to achieve the intended therapeutic result.

Cancer: raise awareness and act in prevention

Some cancers, such as breast, cervix, or colorectal have a high chance of cure when detected early and treated in accordance with best practice.

However, there are significant variations in the availability of treatment between countries depending on their income level. According to various reports, more than 90% of high-income countries offer comprehensive cancer treatmentwhile in low-income countries this proportion is less than 15%.

The primary goal will always be to cure the cancer or significantly prolong the life of the patient. Another important goal is to improve their quality of life, and that they can have a physical, psychosocial and spiritual well-being, through palliative care in the terminal phases. Appropriate treatment and palliative care are essential in these patients.

The purpose of the palliative care is not to cure cancer, but alleviate the symptoms it causes and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. Palliative care is necessary in advanced stages of the disease, when patients have little chance of cure.

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In more than 90% of the patients who are in these stages, palliative care allows to alleviate the symptoms, provide containment and accompany the patient and his family in the final moments. Home and community care strategies are essential to deliver palliative care and pain relief services.

Finally, it is everyone’s responsibility to contribute at the family and community level, to accompany the cancer patient and their family. Both within the health system and within the communities, they are patients who require humanitarian and compassionate treatment by those who assist and accompany them.

*Médica MN 88956, Health Coach

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