Cancer Treatment in India
Posted On: June 20, 2019
India has continued its fight with cancer but due to the lack of timely diagnosis and prevention, 0.78 million people die every year. Apart from that, India has the third highest number of cancer deaths in the world. Almost all types of cancer have been witnessed in India. The list includes skin, lungs, breast, rectum, stomach, prostate, liver, cervix, esophagus, bladder, blood, mouth etc.
Even with the best of technology, diagnosis and treatment, cancer is the second most common disease in India. Cancer prevalence in India has been affecting each and every age group in the country. Precisely, doctors suggest that the best way to beat cancer is the early stage diagnosis of the disease. However, it becomes really difficult to track the symptoms of cancer in its early stage. Mostly, the disease gets diagnosed in the later stages and it complicates the treatment process.
As the disease grows deeper inside the body, it slowly starts affecting the body functionality. However, these changes can help identify the presence of cancer even well-before the diagnosis.
The common signs of cancer are:
Unexplained Weight Loss
If you are losing weight without any obvious reasons, then there are chances that you may have cancer. When you are infected with cancer cells, your body will lose weight at some point of time. It is a common sign of stomach, lung, and pancreas or esophagus cancer.
Cancer adversely affects your immune system and cuts down the resistance power of the body. Subsequently, your body will not be able to fight the infections and it will result in frequent sickness. Fever becomes more common in the cases of lymphoma and leukemia cancer.
In case you feel tired and exhausted even after having adequate rests, then it is a sign of concern. Many cancer experts and doctors suggest that it is a sign of aggravating cancer. However, fatigue and tiredness is witnessed in the later stage of the disease but it might appear early in case of leukemia.
Unusual pain indicates bone cancer or testicular cancer. If you are suffering from frequent headache and it is not stopping with the use of medicines then you might have a brain tumor. In many other cases, unusual back pain is the common sign of colon, rectum, or ovarian cancer.
Changes in your skin are a common indicator in cases of skin cancer, but there are many other types of cancer, known for inviting noteworthy changes in your skin.
Skin alteration due to cancer includes:
- Darker skin
- Yellowish skin and eyes
- Reddened skin Itching
- Excessive hair growth
If you find perpetual lumps or swelling in any of your body parts then it should be brought into the notice of your doctor as soon as possible. These lumps may be a sign of cancer.
Cough or Hoarseness
Coughing is common due to seasonal change but if it takes too long to cure, then you might be suffering from laryngeal, or thyroid, lung cancer or lymphoma. In case, medicines are unable to cure your coughing, then you should definitely consult a doctor.
Change in Bowel Habits
Various studies have shown that cancer makes people experience changes in the amount, or size of their bowel movements. In many cases, these changes in the bowel movements could possibly be because of certain food types or medicines. However, if it continues to happen regularly, it might be a sign of colon cancer.
Changes in Bladder Activity
Changes related to bladder activity are often experienced by the females as they tend to suffer from urinary tract infections more as compared to men. Any change in the bladder activity is therefore linked with UTI. However, if the changes accompany blood in urine or severe pain, it can be a sign of bladder, kidney or prostate cancer.
Unusual bleeding is a common symptom of cancer and you will notice it during any stage of the cancer. If your cough contains blood, it can be a sign of lung cancer, if blood is seen in the stool it can be because of colon or rectal cancer. In women, abnormal bleeding from the vagina can be indicative of cervical or the endometrial cancer. If you observe bloody discharge from your nipples, it can be a sign of breast cancer. Any unusual bleeding needs immediate medical attention.
The Most Commonly Followed Cancer Treatments in India
As there are different types of cancer witnessed in the country, the types of cancer treatment also differs accordingly. Sometimes a patient requires just a single treatment modality, whereas in certain cases, a combination of treatments is required to treat cancer. The treatment module depends on the cancer type and stage.
There are many types of cancer treatment, but the most commonly used ones are surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
Let us have a look at these commonly used cancer treatments:
Among the common types of cancer treatment in India, a surgery is done to remove cancer cells that are concentrated in one area. Surgery happens to be the oldest treatment type and continues to be an effective treatment for all cancer types. In certain advanced cancer stages, surgery stands to be the only option. To determine whether surgery is the required treatment module for cancer treatment, a biopsy is the only diagnostic method. Often surgery is combined with alternative cancer treatments as chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Pain and infection are the common side effects of surgery.
This treatment process uses X-rays to damage or destroy the cancer cells in order to prevent them from multiplying. Radiation therapy is mostly used to treat primary or advanced cancer. In some cases, radiation therapy can also be used to diminish cancer cell size as well as alleviate pain, uneasiness or any other symptom that causes discomfort.
While administering radiation therapy, it is taken care that the therapy causes minimal harm to the healthy cells around the targeted site. Radiation can be given externally or through implants placed in the body near the cancer cell. The common side effects of a radiation therapy include fatigue, skin changes and decreased appetite.
As an advanced cancer treatment, it is a combination of strong drugs, often given orally or by injection, to shrink, or damage the cancer cells. Sometimes chemotherapy is recommended as a post cancer treatment like following a surgery. The main aim of chemotherapy post a cancer treatment is to destroy the remaining cancer cells. Chemotherapy is a suitable treatment for most cancer types. In some cases, chemotherapy stands to be the only option. However, in most of the cases, chemotherapy is often combined with other treatment types to offer the most effective cancer treatment solution.
While targeting the cancer cells, chemotherapy also damages healthy cells thus causing side effects, such as nausea, hair loss, vomiting, mouth sores and fatigue. Hair loss is the common side effect of chemotherapy, but it’s a temporary thing as the hair often grows back after a certain time frame.
Other Cancer Treatment Types
With the development of innovative technology and medical science, many treatment modules have been designed for treating cancer in the past few years. These new cancer treatments include immunotherapy, monoclonal antibody therapy, hormone therapy, biological therapy and targeted therapy.
A targeted therapy makes use of targeted drugs to stop the formation of blood vessels near the cancer cells. In some cases, targeted therapy can even turn off the signal which instructs the cancer cells to grow.
Then there is hormone therapy as well, which is used to treat cancers that grow with the help of certain hormones. Hormone therapy is also known as endocrine therapy.
Immunotherapyis also a cancer treatment type which works by boosting your body’s immune system or marking the cancer cells that allows your immune system to locate and destroy them. Some immunotherapy types are even known as biotherapy or biologic therapy. It is often combined with surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy to treat cancer.
All these cancer treatments have proved highly effective in treating cancer. An oncologist will suggest the most suitable treatment considering the cancer type, its location and intensity.
Shalby Hospitals - Cancer & Research Institute brings to you the most advanced cancer treatment in Ahmedabad. Our team of trained oncologists, Radiologists and experienced Onco-surgeons are dedicated to providing efficient medical and surgical care for all types of cancers.
For more details on types of cancer treatment in Ahmedabad, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Bhavesh Parekh
Consultant- Medical Oncology
Shalby Cancer & Research Centre
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