Canceris a critical medical concern worldwide which accounts for asubstantial amount of morbidityand mortalityamong all age groups and it spans across all genders. Global cancerstatistics reveal that as of 2012, new cases of infection totaled to14 million with deaths recorded at 8.2 million (World HealthOrganization 1). This paper will identify the causes, detection,treatment,current research and advancements in the topic of cancer and relatedillnesses.
Anti-cancer: Tending to prevent any form of cancer.
Bacterial: Concerning a bacteria/ bacterium.
Biochemistry: Constitutes research on how drugs work from the moment they undergo cellular absorption to the time they are metabolized in the body.
Biopsy: Involves the removal of a section of tumor cells for histopathology diagnostic examinations. This process is aimed at gaining a specific diagnosis.
Cancer: Constitutes a group of abnormally growing cells which have the potency to extend and spread to other body parts.
Carcinogens: Cancer causing substances that affect a tissue.
Cardiovascular diseases: Diseases of the blood vessels and the heart.
Chemotherapy: Involves the use of drugs to combat cancer.
Chronic: Diseases that tend to last longer than normal.
Clinical chemistry: Pertains to the bodily fluids analysis for diagnostic reasons.
Curative: Treatment with the aim of curing.
Diagnosis: Involves the process of undertaking an examination for the determination of the nature of a disease.
Endocrinology: Involves the study of hormones as well as the glands in the endocrine system.
Etiology: A set of factors that promote the causation of a disease.
Genetic constitution: Alleles in particular loci in an organism.
Histopathology: Constitutes the studies of cells that are related to a disease.
HPV test: Test used to identify human papillomavirus in the cervix. This test is applied in the detection of cervical cancer.
Immunotherapy: A form of treatment that fights cancer by the utilization of the body’s immune system.
Incidence: Frequency of a disease.
Malignant: Cells that are cancerous which are rapidly growing.
Mammography test: Is a breast imaging exam that is used to detect cancer of the breast.
Morbidity: Disease incidence or prevalence in a given population group.
Mortality: Death rates associated with a particular disease.
New drug development: Involves the process of coming up with a new pharmaceutical drug in the process of drug discovery. This is a stepwise process that commences after the identification of a lead compound.
Oncological: That pertains to the treatment, diagnosis, and prevention of cancer-related illnesses.
Palliative: Treatment with the aim of pain reduction.
PAP cytology: This is a cervical cancer screening method. Identification of pre-cancerous and cancerous cells, in the cervix, is done.
Parasitic: Concerning a parasite.
Pharmacology: Medical branch that is involved with the study of drugs and matters surrounding their usage, effects, and mode of action.
Pre-cancerous: Potency of developing into cancer if untreated.
Pre-clinical: Before the clinical stage.
Radiotherapy: Involves the use of radiation emissions to kill cancer cells.
Screening: Evaluation of a disease for the determination of the suitability of a particular method that can be used to combat its negative effects.
Surgeries: Involves treatments that constitute cutting, and either the removal or replacement of diseased or injured body tissues.
Symptoms: Features that affirm a disease condition in a patient.
Treatment: Medical care that is administered to a patient.
Tumor biology: Involves the study of how cancer cells undergo replication and grow independently to result in tumor formation.
Tumor: Any form of swelling of tissue caused by instances of abnormal growth.
Viral: Involving a virus.
Visual inspection with acetic acid: Is a test that is incorporated for the identification of lesions in the cervix. The test involves the application to the cervix, of acetic acid that is freshly prepared.
Canceras earlier mentioned affects people indiscriminately. However, amongthe cases that have been identified, the most common type of cancersthat affect men are those of the lung, prostate, liver, stomach, andcolorectum. Among the women, the target sites that are mostvulnerable and which are attributed to deaths are cancers of thestomach, breast, colorectum, lung, and cervix. Cancer is expected tosurpass cardiovasculardiseasesand as a result, become the leading cause of death among populations.
Theetiology of cancer commences from a single cell which undergoes rapiddifferentiation to a point where multiple cells emerge. Thereplication process begins at the pre-cancerousstage to the onset of tumorsthat are malignant.The changes that trigger the transformation presented aboveconstitute three external factors that interact with the geneticconstitutionof an individual. These factors include carcinogensthat can be of the following types:
Physical i.e. exposure to radioactive emission and UV rays.
Biological i.e. viral, bacterial or parasitic infections.
Chemical i.e. ingestions of material containing contaminants like arsenic, aflatoxin, asbestos.
Therisks associated with cancer according to Jemal et al (1), increasewith age. The reason behind this is that mechanisms of cellularrepair reduce their effectiveness when an individual ages.
Theincidenceofcancer can be reduced with the adoption of strategies for preventionthat are evidence based and early detection of the disease.Management of cancer-related illnesses among the patients is alsovital. Cancer, similarly to other chronicand other diseases, can be cured upon early detection. In the bid tocombat the disease, changes that concern eliminating the risk factorsought to be addressed. Some of the ways that risk factors can beaddressed include avoidance of:
Overweight and obesity instances
Untreated viral infections
Exposure to radiation emissions
Smoke from fuels
Thefactors as above mentioned ought to be part and parcel of preventionstrategies that are set in place to fight the incidence of cancerillnesses.
Thedetection of cancer can be done through early diagnosis and screeningprocedures. In the early diagnosis function, symptomsand signs are identified where in this case, physical examinationsfor cancers of the breast, for instance, can be conducted. Earlydiagnosis is imperative in populations that are characterized bylow-income settings. If there is a failure at this stage, it is quiteevident that treatment may be too late in cases where the diseaseprogresses undetected.
Underthe screening phase, identification of the individuals who portrayabnormality instances is done. Upon detecting the type of cancerpresent in their bodies during the screening procedure, theindividuals as mentioned earlier, undergo treatment. These kinds ofprograms are usually available for the susceptible population and areoften cost effective and accessible. Some of the screening proceduresthat are done to promote further diagnosis include:
PAP cytology/ smear
Visual inspection with acetic acid
Biopsy studies using techniques in histopathology
Thetreatment of cancer-related illnesses is one of the widely soughttopics by researchers. The primary aim of the research conducted isto facilitate the identification of treatment regimens that are, notonly affordable, but also augurs well with the patient. Some of thetreatment packages that are available may include Surgeries,chemotherapy,and radiotherapy.The treatment regimens that are provided are aimed at promoting anindividual’s wellbeing. Asides from offering curativeand palliativecare,psychological and supportive care, are examples of treatment optionsthat promote the quality of life of a patient (World HealthOrganization 1).
Addressingissues that pertain to cancer is not complete without acknowledgingthe role of oncologicalresearch that is being done given the susceptibility of populationsto the disease, as well as the rising death rate instances. Studiesonnew drug developmentby the use of existing starter materials as well as the assessment ofindividuals to ascertain anti-cancerattributes are the potentials that are being tapped by currentresearch. The research studies as aforementioned are conducted bothin vivo and in-vitro systems which allow pre-clinicaldrug testing for the identification of the appropriate dosage forms.It is critical to note that research in oncology draws knowledge fromtumorbiology,biochemistry,clinicalchemistry,endocrinology,and pharmacology,just to mention a few. Research breakthroughs are gradually takingeffect with the example of the inception of immunotherapytechniquesin combating cancer (American Society of Clinical Oncology 1).
AmericanSociety of Clinical Oncology."ClinicalCancer Advances 2016." ASCO.N.p., 2016.www.asco.org.Accessed on 27 Oct. 2016.
"Cancer."WorldHealth Organization.World Health Organization, 2015.http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs297/en/.Accessed on 27 Oct. 2016.
Jemal,Ahmedin, et al. "Global cancer statistics." CA: a cancerjournal for clinicians 61.2 (2011): 69-90.Siegel, R. L., Miller, K.D., & Jemal, A. (2015). Cancer statistics, 2015. CA: a cancerjournal for clinicians, 65(1), 5-29.
Siegel,Rebecca L., Kimberly D. Miller, and Ahmedin Jemal. "Cancerstatistics, 2015." CA:a cancer journal for clinicians 65.1(2015): 5-29.