Cancer: Overview, causes, treatments, and types

The human body is made up of many cells which replicate through cell division. It is a common process in which the body cells undergo controlled division. However, when these cells start growing abnormally, it is called cancer.

The cell growth becomes uncontrolled and obstructs the body’s developmental system. The main cause is when cells divide uncontrollably and spread into surrounding tissues. The main cause changes in DNA.

Most malignancy-causing DNA changes occur in sections of DNA called genes. These changes are also called genetic changes. It is not one disease. Actually, it is a group of more than 100 different and typical diseases. It can involve any tissue of the body and have many different forms in each body area. This is one of the highest causes of death in the world.

Causes of cancer

Also, some chemicals or ultraviolet rays can cause a person to get this disease.  Other health conditions and bad dietary habits can also cause this issue. It can involve any tissue of the body and have many different forms in each body area. It is one of the highest causes of death in the world.

Alt text = Cancer
Cancer

What is Cancer Growth and Metastasis

In a healthy body, the trillions of cells it’s made of grow and divide, as the body needs them to function daily. Healthy cells have a specific life cycle, reproducing, and dying off in a way that is defined by the type of cell.

New cells take the place of old or damaged cells as they die. In this case, it disrupts this process and leads to abnormal growth in cells. changes or modification in DNA is the cause of it.

What are the major risk factors?

The most common risk factors for this disease include aging, tobacco, sun exposure, radiation exposure, chemicals, and other substances, some viruses and bacteria, certain hormones, family history of this disease, alcohol, poor diet, lack of physical activity, or being overweight.

DNA lives in the respective genes of every cell. It has instructions that tell the cell what acts to perform and how to grow and divide. Modifications occur frequently in DNA, but usually, cells correct these mistakes. When a mistake is not corrected, a cell can become cancerous.

Modifications can cause cells that should be replaced to survive instead of die, and new cells to form when they’re not needed. So then these extra cells can divide uncontrollably, causing growths called tumours to form. For instance, tumours can cause a variety of health problems, depending on where they grow in the body.

But not all tumours are not cancerous. Benign tumours are noncancerous and do not spread to nearby tissues. Sometimes, they can grow large and cause problems when they press against neighbouring organs and tissue. Likewise, Malignant tumours are cancerous and can infect other parts of the body.

Some malignancy cells can also migrate through the bloodstream or lymphatic system to distant areas of the body. This process is called metastasis. Such cancers that have metastasized are considered more advanced than those that have not. Also, Metastatic cancers tend to be harder to treat and more fatal.

Major types of cancer

The major types of cancer are carcinoma, sarcoma, melanoma, lymphoma, and leukemia. Carcinomas is the most common diagnosis of this disease. It originates in the skin, lungs, breasts, pancreas, and other organs and glands. Lymphomas are cancers of lymphocytes. Leukemia is cancer of the blood.

General types of cancer:

  • Carcinoma starts in the skin or the tissues that line other organs.
  • Sarcoma is a cancer of connective tissues such as bones, muscles, cartilage, and blood vessels.
  • Melanoma is a form of skin cancer that begins in the cells (melanocytes) that control the pigment in your skin.
  • Leukemia is a cancer of the bone marrow, which creates blood cells.
  • Lymphoma and myeloma are cancers of the immune system.

Risk Factors and Treatment

The direct cause of this disease is changes (or modifications) to the DNA in your cells. Genetic mutations can be inherited. They can also occur after birth as a result of environmental forces. Some of these forces include:

  • exposure to cancer-causing chemicals called carcinogens
  • exposure to radiation
  • unprotected exposure to the sun
  • certain viruses, such as the human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • smoking
  • lifestyle choices, such as type of diet and level of physical activity

Accordingly, risk tends to increase with age. Some existing health conditions that cause inflammation may also increase your risk of malignancy. An example is an ulcerative colitis, a chronic inflammatory bowel disease.

Factor that contribute to malignancy

Knowing the factors that contribute to this disease can help you to live a lifestyle that decreases your risks. According to specialists, these are the seven best ways to prevent this disease:

  • Stop using tobacco and avoid secondhand smoke.
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet.
  • Keep a healthy weight and stay active by getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day.
  • Stay protected from the sun.
  • Get a vaccine against viral infections that can lead to this disease, such as hepatitis B and HPV.
  • Don’t engage in risky behaviors. Practice safe sex and don’t share needles when using drugs or prescription medications. Only get tattoos at licensed parlors.
  • See your doctor regularly so they can screen you for various type of cancers. This increases your chances of catching any possible cancers as early as possible.

Treatment

Generally, treatment has different objectives, it depends on the type of cancer and how to advance it is. These objectives include:

  • Finding a cure: This is not likely for all cancers and situations.
  • Providing primary treatment: Killing the culprit cells in your body.
  • Getting adjuvant treatment: Killing cancers cells that remain after primary treatment to reduce your risk of coming back.
  • Providing analgesia treatment: Relieving health symptoms associated with cancer, such as trouble breathing and pain.

The most common types of treatment are:

Surgery

Surgically removes as much cancer as possible.

Chemotherapy

Uses medications that are toxic to cells to kill rapidly dividing the cells.

Radiation Therapy

Uses powerful, focused beams of radiation inside (brachytherapy) or outside (external beam radiation) your body to kill cancer cells.

Stem Cell (Bone Marrow) Transplant

Repairs diseased bone marrow with healthy stem cells. Stem cells undifferentiated cells that can have a variety of functions. These transplants allow medics to use higher doses of chemotherapy to treat cancer.

Immunotherapy (Biological Therapy)

Uses antibodies to help your body’s immune system recognize cancer so it can fight it off.

Hormone Therapy

Removes or blocks hormones that fuel certain cancers to stop cancer cells from growing.

Targeted Drug Therapy

Uses drugs to interfere with certain molecules that help cancer cells grow and survive.

Clinical Trials

Investigates new ways to treat Malignancy.

Alternative Medicine

Used to decrease symptoms of malignancy and side effects of malignancy treatment, such as nausea, fatigue, and pain. Alternative medicine includes:

  • acupuncture
  • hypnosis
  • massage
  • yoga
  • meditation
  • relaxation techniques

What is the most common malignancy ?

Generally, the most common type of cancer on the list is breast cancer, with 284,200 new cases expected in the United States in 2021. The next most common cancers are prostate cancer and lung cancer. Colon and rectal cancers are often referred to as “colorectal cancers,” these two cancer types are combined for the list.

What is a Major Malignancy

A malignant tumour is positively diagnosed with histological confirmation and characterized by the uncontrolled growth of malignant cells with invasion and destruction of normal tissue. The term Major Malignancy includes, but does not limits to, leukemia, lymphoma and sarcoma.

Which is fastest-growing cancer?

In the United States, primary liver cancer has become the fastest growing cancer in terms of incidence, in both men and women. From 2012-2016, the incidence of liver cancer increased by 2.5%, the largest increase of any cancer during the time period.

What types of cancer are the deadliest?

According to the American Cancer Society, lung cancer caused by asbestos is the deadliest killer. Accordingly, 142,670 deaths in 2019 alone, making it three times deadlier than breast cancer.

Which cancer kills fastest?

Pancreatic cancer is hard to diagnose early and so when it is diagnosed there needs to be a sense of urgency in treating people with the disease, as it is the quickest killing cancer. Thus Pancreatic Cancer is also known as Silent Killer.

What cancer Cannot cure?

Chronic cancer is not curable but that ongoing treatment, also called extended treatment, can control for months or years.