Cancer risk factors - Things you must be aware about
Skin cancer. Risk Factors
1. Prolonged exposure to sun, wind or cold temperatures. The risk increases in people having white or clear skin.
2. Exposure to irritant chemicals such as arsenic, petroleum, coal, paraffin, especially by workers in these industries.
3. Scars caused by wounds or severe burns.
4. Exposure to x-ray radiation and other radioactive materials.
Symptoms: People who are exposed to the risk factors mentioned above must pay attention to chronic ulcers or irritations that do not heal, moles and other birthmarks that increase in size or change in color.
Diagnosis: Annual medical examination should be done. Frequent observation by the patient himself for sensitive areas of skin, especially moles, scars and birthmarks should be done on a regular basis.
Prevention: As a preventive measure, you should use sunscreen and avoid exposure to the sun for a long time, especially if your skin is very sensitive and very white. Clothing should be adequate to protect against sun, wind, or cold as appropriate.
For moles and warts, it is advisable to remove them surgically and burns and fistulas must receive proper treatment to heal. Avoid chronic irritation on any body part by the way of clothing or other factors.
Breast cancer - Risk Factors
The causes of breast cancer are not well known or understood as of yet, but according to the medical advice, the following factors can be attributed to this disease:
1. Obese women who have children after age 30 are more susceptible to cancer.
2. The presentation of chronic lesions in the breast.
3. Family history of breast cancer.
4. Personal history of breast cancer.
5. Early menarche and late menopause.
Symptoms: Woman must pay close attention to any discomfort, pain, mass, or thickening of the breast or armpit that does not disappear within several days. Another warning sign is the discharge from the nipple or retracted skin dimples.
Diagnosis: Every woman after age 18 should do self-breast examination and keep control over any abnormality present and this should be done five days after menses each month. Any abnormality should be reported to the doctor or gynecologist.
The physical examination by a women disease specialist should be performed every year. Every woman should perform self-breast exam to prevent breast cancer.
Uterine Cancer Risk Factors
1. Sexual intercourse at an early age.
2. Sex with different individuals.
3. Have had venereal diseases, herpes, etc.
4. Have submitted altered cytology.
Symptoms: You should investigate any irregular or prolonged vaginal bleeding like small spots or bleeding or pain after sexual intercourse.
Diagnosis: Cervical cytology is a great help for early diagnosis of cancer. This involves taking a sample of the secretion of the cervix to examine the cells. The sample is spread over a plate and laboratory techniques of fixation and staining are utilized and then observed under the microscope.
Prevention: As a preventive measure, a woman should undergo annual physical exam and Pap smear (also called Pap or Papanicolaou test). Any woman who engages in sexual activity and is more than 18 years, this tests should be performed on a regular basis, especially for women having uterine or ovarian cancer in their family history.
Other preventative measures include delaying the onset of sexual activity and sexual intercourse with an individual.
Lung cancer. Risk Factors
1. Use of snuff.
2. Lung cancer occurs people working in environments where there is exposure to chromium compounds, nickel, petroleum, uranium, and arsenic contamination of the air.
3. People working in factories using asbestos as their raw material.
5. Personal history of ovarian or endometrial cancer.
6. Frequent-based therapy of estrogen (female hormone).
Symptoms: People should be alert to persistent cough, difficulty breathing and chest pain, any change in sputum color, or blood in the sputum.
Diagnosis: Persons exposed to the risk factors mentioned above must undergo an annual medical examination and radiological lung examination, but also must undergo frequent examinations of sputum.
Prevention: The most important preventative measure for lung cancer is smoking cessation. People who use snuff have 75% more chances of having lung cancer.
In industries where workers are exposed to carcinogens in the environment, must take security measures for their protection and that the incidence of lung cancer among them is very high and if they are smokers, this incidence increases to a considerable degree.
Stomach cancer Risk Factors
1. People with reflux esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus irritation caused by reflux of gastric juice in the stomach) are at risk for stomach cancer.
2. People having problems with lack of secretion of gastric juice.
3. Patients of chronic gastritis.
4. Gastric ulcer.
5. Abuse of alcohol and snuff.
Symptoms: These are major signs, loss of appetite, dark, black, or tar colored stools and difficulty in swallowing food. Other signs are inflammation of the gastric mucosa or chronic gastritis and weight loss. Men and women older than 35 years are at more risk in this case.
Prevention: As a preventive measure, healthy diet must be taken into account. The diet should also be balanced, low in fat and rich in fruits, grains and vegetables. Alcohol consumption is a frequent cause of gastritis and people should avoid eating fried or oily food.
People with digestive tract problems such as ulcers, polyps, gastritis at also at risk so must have medical control.
Prostate cancer Risk Factors
The incidence increases with age especially after 50 years.
Although the problems of the prostate begin after age 50, it is at age 65 when more severe cases are present.
Symptoms: Cancer of the prostate gland is very common and a person should give due importance to the symptoms because the onset of cancer usually does not report any evidence at first just like it happens with other cancers. The first symptom is difficulty urinating and others are presence of blood in the urine and need to urinate several times at night or in medical terms know as urinary frequency.
Diagnosis: Consultation with a good nephrologist or a urinary tract specialist is needed for diagnosis. The examination includes digital rectal examination, physical examination, and laboratory tests.
Prevention: As a preventive measure, regular prostate exam is required after 50 years, as the results for early diagnosis of the disease are generally satisfactory.
How to prevent cancer? My take
The most effective measure in preventing lung cancer is by eliminating the consumption of snuff as around 30% of all cancer deaths are caused by snuff consumption. For other types of cancer prevention, a healthy diet should be consumed to decrease calorie intake and to prevent obesity. Reducing the calories from fat to 20% of the diet, reduced consumption of red meat, increasing intake of fiber (cereal, fruits, and vegetables) and protective foods (containing vitamins A and C, vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli or Brussels sprouts), limiting the consumption of smoked foods, salted or rich in nitrite food, and less consumption of alcohol prevents cancer.
Controlling environmental factors including the elimination of carcinogens in the workplace and at home including elimination of exposure to asbestos fibers or the reduction of radon gas in the home should be performed.
The techniques of early detection should be performed for cancer of the cervix (cervical cancer), breast, colon, rectum and prostate. Conducting an annual check from 40 years for every person even in the absence of symptoms should be recommended. Public health system in many countries do not provide this facility and the patient must cover the expense himself or herself.
Breast cancer is considered one of the major health problems in developed countries and many women die each year from this cause. Women over 50 years have the highest risk of developing breast cancer and patients aged above 75 years at maximum risk of developing cancer.
Cytology is an effective method for early detection of cervical cancer. Conducting a Pap smear every 3 years is recommended.
In many developed countries, there has been a recent increase in the number of people who enjoy their holidays in developing countries having warm weather. These people are more prone to having skin cancer. Preventive measures should be taken such as the use of creams or sun shields against the action of potentially damaging solar ultraviolet rays.
Widespread awareness and adoption of the measures discussed above for early detection of cancer can reduce the incidents of breast cancer, colon cancers, rectal cancer, cervix cancer, and prostate cancer.
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