Cancer, commonly referred to as a malignant tumour because of its malignant growth of tumour, a fatal disease caused by an uncontrolled division of abnormal cells in a part of the body. Cancer is not one disease. It is a group of more than 100 different and distinctive diseases. To add, there are 100 types of cancer. To name few, the types include skin cancer, lung cancer and rest of them can be read from the picture below.
When a person is healthy, normal cells follow a fixed pattern to grow, divide and death. But, when this fixed pattern is interrupted, cancer starts to grow uncontrollably without following any order hampering body’s proper functioning.
Prevention is always better than cure. But, if you or someone you know is affected by cancer the treatment to cure cancer varies depending upon the type of cancer and its stage. Traditional treatments like surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and new forms of treatments and complementary and alternative therapies have been found to help the patient to great extent.
While you feel concerned by the horror of the challenge to overcome, the knowledge comes as handy for you to know about the various treatments available for cancer.
- Radiation therapy
- Targeted therapy
- Hormone therapy
- Stem cell transplant
As the word itself refers, it’s a surgical method to remove the cancerous cells from your body. It is done by trained and experienced surgeons. It depends on the surgeon choice either to remove cells by open surgery or minimal invasive surgery. Open surgery removes the cancerous growth along with adjacent healthy tissues and lymph nodes. Laparoscopic surgery involves inserting cameras and apparatus through holes drilled in the body to remove the growth with less impact on surrounding tissues.
This method uses high radiation to burn, shrink and stop spreading growing cancer cells in the body. External Beam Radiation uses machines to direct rays towards your cancer growth without touching the body. Internal Radiation applies radiation source in solid form close to the growth for targeted release or liquid form in the blood stream letting it to travel through tissues and target random cancer cells.
This method involves use of specific drugs to kill cancer cells and retards spreading. It is useful for preventing recurrence and shrinking growth of cancer cells.
This is a biological method applied therapy that helps the immune system to fight cancer. It uses living organisms to improve the functioning and impact of the immune system. Monoclonal antibodies bind to specific targets and trigger immune responses to kill cancer cells. Adaptive cell transfer increases the natural ability of T cells to resist cancer. Cytokines are the body’s own protein products used to enhance the response of the immune system. Treatment vaccines work against cancer cells by triggering opposition to their growth.
In this type of therapy the small molecular drug or monoclonal antibodies are used to challenge the cancer cells and nullify their ability to divide and grow.
This procedure of therapy slows down the production of hormones that helps growth of cancer cells. They work in two ways: by blocking the production of the hormone in the body or by changing the behavior of these hormones. It has been observed that this is particularly useful for breast cancer.
Stem Cell Transplant
This method replaces blood producing stem cells in patients whose blood cells have been damaged or destroyed due to cancer, by open surgery or therapy.
Apart from these, there are complimentary therapies which have to be understood to help in cancer cells elimination. They are:
- Naturopathic medicine
- Nutritional therapy
- Physical rehabilitation
- Mind body medicine
- Spiritual Support