Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health
Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health

Cancer

What is cancer?

Causes of cancer and what to avoid

Symptoms of cancer

Cancer remedies / treatments

References

What is cancer?

Cancer (medical description is malignant neoplasm) is a broad group of over 200 diseases in which cell growth and communication gets out of control. A cancerous group of cells divide and grow abnormally. They can form malignant tumours, invade and destroy adjacent tissue, or metastasise (spread to other locations throughout the body via lymph or blood). Most cancers form a tumour, but some such as leukaemia do not.

Not all tumours are cancerous. Benign tumours do not grow uncontrollably, do not invade neighbouring tissues, and do not metastasise.

The standard medical treatment for cancer is a combination of one or more of chemotherapy, radiation therapy or surgery. When using these treatments, the survival rate depends upon the type and location of the cancer and the extent of disease at the start of treatment.

The risk of cancer increases with age, and the majority of people who are diagnosed with an invasive cancer are over the age of 65. The most common types of cancer in children are leukaemia, brain tumours, lymphomas and blastomas. Cancer caused about 13% of all human deaths worldwide in 2007. The most common forms are lung, stomach, liver, colorectal and breast. Cancer is the leading cause of death in the developed countries, and the second most common cause in developing countries.

Rates are rising as more people live to an older age and live a more cancer-prone lifestyle.

Causes of cancer and what to avoid

The causes of cancer are controversial. Most scientists think that 90-97% of cancers are caused by environmental factors, with only 3-10% of them having a hereditary or genetic defect cause.

Symptoms of cancer

When a cancer starts, it produces no symptoms. Signs and symptoms only appear as it grows, progresses or ulcerates. At first, the symptoms may be mild, non-specific, and similar to the symptoms that occur with a variety of other conditions. It is not uncommon for early-stage patients to be treated for other ailments that cause the same symptoms.

The local symptoms of a cancer are caused by the mass of a tumour, or its ulceration. Blockages, lumps, swelling, bleeding or the build-up of fluid in the chest or abdomen can occur. Initially cancers are usually painless, and pain occurs only in advanced stages.

The systemic or generalised symptoms of cancer are weight loss, fever, being excessively tired, and changes to the skin. Other more specific symptoms for some types of cancers may include clubbing of the fingers and nails, and nerve disorders.

When metastasis occurs, the lymph nodes, liver or spleen can swell, affected bones may fracture, and neurological symptoms can occur.

Cancer remedies / treatments

Many effective cancer treatments are simply a treatment for the above cancer causes.

References

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