BCMCH: Best Cancer Care Hospital in Kerala: Hope & Healing

Date posted:  01-08-2023

The well-known phrase "Health is wealth" may have piqued your interest. You know why they say that? Because if you're not healthy, you won't be satisfied even if you have millions of dollars in your bank account. Nothing you strive or work for will be appreciated until you are in excellent health.

Every person will have health problems at some point in their lives, and it is unavoidable. Humans can suffer from any type of "disease" which basically refers to any ailment that interferes with the body's natural functioning. The bulk of them are curable, but there are still numerous illnesses for which there is no known solution. One of them is cancer. The word "cancer" scares everyone who has been diagnosed with it.

The name CANCER is derived from an old Greek word that signifies crab because to its similar appearance to crab legs.

Cancer is defined by aberrant cell proliferation. Cancer is, without a doubt, unbiased and unprejudiced. People are diagnosed regardless of their cultural background, gender, or economic level.

The good news is that not all cancers are fatal. Some cancers are considered benign, which
means they rarely cause death and do not spread to other parts of the body. Some of them, however, are highly dangerous or "malignant," which means they may move from one region of the body to the other and disseminate cancerous cells. These malignancies are exceedingly lethal, having a poor survival rate.

  • Have you ever wondered how people develop cancer? What factors contributed to their cancer?
  • Were there any indications or symptoms that the cancer was developing?
  • Were the signs neglected for an extended period of time, allowing the cancer to develop indefinitely?
  • What if the cancer was detected early on? Can we say that if this were the case, the chances of survival would have been higher?
  • Do cancer patients live a normal life?
  • Is it true that cancer runs in families?
  • Is there a stigma linked with cancer?
  • How is the cancer situation in India different from that in Western countries?
  • The primary question on everybody’s mind is whether it is feasible to cure cancer?

The inquiries about this horrible six-letter term are numerous. In addition to the daunting

How big is the problem in India?

1. Every 8 minutes, one woman dies from cervical cancer.

2. One in every two women diagnosed with breast cancer dies from it.

3. Every day, 3500 people die as a result of tobacco smoking.

What causes Cancer?

Cancer is on the rise, and the majority of instances are caused by environmental causes. Although we cannot pinpoint a single cause of cancer, there are always risk factors that contribute to the development of cancer in adults. Some of these risk factors are-

1. The food that you eat can also predispose you to have certain types of cancer. These are referred to be “carcinogenic foods”.

  • Consuming excessive sweets, for example. Breast, endometrial (uterine), and ovarian malignancies are more prevalent in those with type 2 diabetes. These are also known to be caused by eating refined carbohydrates.
  • Grilled or barbecued meat is known to increase the risk of cancer. When these overcooked foods are heated to extremely high temperatures, they have the potential to release carcinogens.
  • It is widely acknowledged that alcohol causes liver damage. Despite knowing this, we continue to consume it. The situation with smoking is similar.
  • Mutton, beef, goat, hog, lamb, horse, and veal are examples of red meat. Red meat has been linked to an increased risk of acquiring colon cancer.
  • Salted fish- Salting is a typical method of preserving food, especially fish. Unfortunately, this preservation method produces carcinogenic byproducts.

2. Many childhood malignancies may be influenced by genetics, inheritance, and family history.

Why is cancer responsible for so many deaths?

Metastasis refers to cancer cells' proclivity to infect neighbouring bodily locations. Malignant cancer can spread, which is the leading cause of cancer death ! These cancerous cells propagate the malignancy by migrating via the blood to other organs.

It has been shown that the yearly death toll from cancer is governed by two variables: the disease's incidence and the survival rate of individuals diagnosed with it. The cancers with the lowest survival rates are the deadliest.

Let’s look at the five of the world’s deadliest & worst cancers ever:

1.Lung cancer

Have you seen the two well-known advertisements that play before movies and during the commercial breaks in theaters?

If so, then you might be familiar with the names Mukesh and Sunita. You may even recall their terribly sick & disfigured features due to chronic consumption of tobacco. Have you ever questioned why they are playing such videos? The Government of India took these actions in response to the rising number of tobacco-related fatalities so that the public would be made aware of the serious dangers of tobacco.

Additionally, a no-smoking message is also displayed on the screen during scenes showing people smoking. Anytime tobacco products are mentioned in a movie or on television, a warning labeled "anti-smoking" must appear at the bottom of the projected image. India is the second largest consumer of tobacco in the world (after China). According to WHO, there are nearly 1.35 million deaths in India due to smoking.

People frequently inquire whether there is a daily cigarette restriction.Even smoking one cigarette per day can have long-term negative health repercussions.

  • A persistent cough is one of the symptoms of lung cancer.
  • You may even cough out blood.
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of breath
  • Pain in the chest or bones are some of the symptoms.

Due to the myth that smoking helps people appear cool, even young boys and girls start smoking more frequently than ever. How can a product that is known to be harmful to one's health make someone more attractive?

Smoking not only increases the risk of lung cancer but also increases the risk of cancer in practically other bodily organs. To mention a few, it can result in emphysema, chronic bronchitis, diabetes, immune system issues, eye illness, and heart disease.

There are some obvious risk factors that cannot be changed and are thus unavoidable !

2.Colorectal cancer

It is a malignancy of the large intestine that affects the colon, rectum and anus. The colon is a lengthy tube that aids in removing the food that has been digested from your body through the rectum. It affects men more frequently.

  • This form of cancer is more likely to occur as people age, have sedentary lifestyles, obesity, have a family history of colorectal cancer in first-degree relatives, suffer from Type 2 Diabetes, consume red meat & processed meat, smoke cigarettes, and use alcohol.
  • The chance of getting this form of cancer is highest in those with a personal history or family history of polyps, inflammatory bowel disease- Ulcerative Colitis, and Crohn's disease.
  • The most typical symptom is a change in frequency of bowel movements. Therefore, if you have colorectal cancer, you may need to go to the bathroom 3–4 times day instead of just once with a feeling of incomplete defaecation.
  • Bright red or black faeces might indicate the presence of blood in the stool. There might be signs of weakness along with weight loss & decreased appetite.

If you experience any of these signs, visit a doctor. Besides the routine testing, colonoscopy and biopsy are two common procedures that can assist confirm a cancer diagnosis and stage it,
which can help determine your course of treatment and estimate your chance of survival.

3.Breast cancer

The most common type of cancer found in Indian women today is breast cancer. It can affect one or both the breasts.

Every four minutes, a woman in India is said to be diagnosed with breast cancer.

  •  Obesity, the fact that the woman is a nulliparous woman(never had children),and
  •  A significant family history of the disease are risk factors.
  •  Other risk factors for this type of cancer include growing older,
  •  Smoking cigarettes
  •  Having your first child beyond the age of 30,
  •  Beginning your periods early, or menopause later than expected.
  •  Having a breast cancer in one breast increases a woman's risk of getting it in the opposite breast.

Does breast cancer affect men as well? Yes, even though it doesn't happen very often. Similar to other types of cancer, breast cancer has difficult late-stage survival rates. Therefore, early detection of breast cancer is possible using a straightforward screening technique. If you discover a new lump in your breast that seems suspicious or if anything seems off, consult your doctor.

Can breast cancer be cured? Yes, if detected early on, and no, if it has progressed to the neighbouring organs (a/k/a advanced breast cancer)

4.Pancreatic cancer

Pancreas is an organ located behind the stomach. helping in food digestion & regulating blood sugar levels in the body.

  •  If a person smokes, consumes alcohol, is obese, has diabetes, or has a history of similar illness in their family, they may be at an increased risk of developing this type of cancer.
  •  It has been shown that those who consume large amounts of red meat are more likely to get this cancer.
  •  Additionally, the likelihood of acquiring this condition increases as people age.

Some of the signs of this illness include abdominal pain, weight loss, and decreased appetite with jaundice. However, rarely is pancreatic cancer found in its earliest stages, when it is most treatable. This is due to the fact that symptoms frequently don't appear until the disease has progressed to other organs. It can be surgically removed if discovered in its early stages.

It is diagnosed with radiological imaging like CT, MRI, PET scan or PET-CT. Medical procedures like biopsy, ERCP/EUS can also help with the diagnosis. Palliative care, chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, or a combination of these can all be used to treat pancreatic cancer. However, the types of treatments that are available depend onthe stage of the cancer.

5.Prostate cancer

Prostate Cancer 3rd Most Common Cancer In Indian Males. Prostate is a part of the male reproductive organs which is situated deep in the groin with a size like a walnut. It functions to gives nourishment & protection to the sperm.

  • Risk factors involve smoking, family history of Prostate cancer, high calorie intake & obesity with other factors already mentioned.
  • Typically observed in elderly males with symptoms such as difficulty urinating or frequent urination,
  • Blood in the urine,
  • Loss of appetite,
  • Weight loss, and
  • Bone pain.

Diagnosed with the help of a PSA blood test or a biopsy to find out the grade of the cancer (also known as Gleason score). MRI or ultrasound can also help with the diagnosis.

As you may have noted, smoking is a risk factor for each of the aforementioned cancers. Therefore, quitting smoking would be a reliable strategy to prevent all of them. Avoiding drinking alcohol and keeping a healthy weight via an active lifestyle are two other avoidable risks.