Cancer is one of the most dreaded disease and major cause of death all over the globe. More the millions of people suffer from Cancer and large number of them die from from it annually. Currently it is the most intense area of research in medical field. It is very difficult to find out causes of cancer.
What is a cancer?
Cancer is not a infectious disease. Actually our body have a highly controlled mechanism of cell growth and differentiation. Cancer is an abnormal growth of cell. Cell looses their property of contact inhibition. Means cells divides uncontrollably and feed on other cells. Due to which the normal cells do not get proper nourishment and start destroying.
What are the types of cancer?
On the basis of location cancer are of two type:
1. Benign or Tumor
When the cancerous cells or oncogenic cells reamins at confined location then it is known as benign tumor. It can be treated easily. Tumor cells are also known as Neoplastic cells.
2. Malignant Tumor
When Oncogenic cells sarts moving and slough at different places in all over the body and starts causing tumor at differnt places it is called malignant tumor. It is hard to cure.
Note: Metastasis: Cells sloughs from tumor to an reaches to distant sites through blood and whenever they get lodged somewhere in body they starts new tumor.
Different types of cancer
- Breast cancer: cancer of breast. Most common cancer in women.
- Skin cancer: Cancer of skin, also known as melanoma.
- Prostate cancer: Cancer of prostate gland present in men.
- Leukemia: Cancer of blood.
- Brain cancer: cancer in brain.
- Colon cancer: Cancer in colon, a large intestinal part
What are the causes of cancer?
Cancer can be induced by physical, chemical and biological agents. These agents are called Carcinogens. Identification of causes of cancer is very difficult.
Cancer from physical agents:
Ionizing radiations like X rays and gamma rays and non ionizing radiations like UV which causes DNA mutations and convert normal cells into neoplastic cells.
Cancer from chemical agents:
Chemical in tobacco smoke is the main cause of ling cancer. And parabens in cosmetic products causes skin cancer.
Cancer from biological agents:
There are cancer causing viruses known as Oncogenic viruses present in environment which carries viral oncogenes . These viruses produces cancer in human body.
Cellular or proto oncogenes
There are several genes known as cellular and proto oncogenes present in normal cells which when activated under certain conditions, causes cancer.
Detection of cancer or diagnosis of cancer
At early stages it is very difficult to diagnose a cancer because the visible symptoms are very rare. For that biopsy or histopathological studies of blood and tissues are done. In biopsy a piece of tissue of suspected area is taken from body and examined under microscope.
In case of leukemia, the increased cell count and bone marrow tests are common.
X-rays, CT(computational tomography) scan, MRI(magnetic resonance technique) are used for cancer detection of internal organs.
CT scan or computational tomography
In this technique X rays are used to form a 3-D image of internal organs
MRI or magnetic resonance imaging
In MRI technique, strong magnetic field or non ionizing radiations are used to form 3 D image of internal organ .
What are the treatment of cancer?
Surgery, radiation therapy, Chemotherapy and immunotherapy are common approaches taken for treatment of cancer. Sometimes in many cases the combination of surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy is used in treating a single type of cancer
In this technique, cancerous cells are irradiated lethally. But the extra care is taken for normal tissues.
Several chemotherapeutic drugs are used in treating cancers. This treatment is very common in most of the type of cancer. But it major drugs have side effects such as hair loss, anemia etc.
Sometimes the patients are given substances like alpha- interferon which activates the immune system and help in destroying the tumor.
Also read: http://www.heathline.com