Cancer and Its Causes, Types, and Warning Signs
There are over 200 diseases that can be called cancer. They have different causes, happen in different tissues, develop in different ways and for different reasons, and demand a variety of treatments. They all have one fatal element in common. In every case normal cells have gone wild and lost their normal growth and development.
The 3 classifications of cancer:
Cancer is classified in 3 stages. The cancer in the epithelial tissue (covering or lining of tissue) are called carcinomas. The 2nd class of malignant tumors is the sarcomas. They originate in connective tissue such as bone and muscles. The 3rd class of cancer is leukemia and the lymphomas. They are diseases of the blood forming organs and the lymphatic system. They are not tumors and spread in a different way.
Stages of cancer:
Initial stages of cancer may start with just one or a few cells in the body that undergo a change and become malignant or cancerous. The cells divide and reproduce themselves. Most cancer arises on the surface of tissue such as skin, uterus lining, mouth, stomach, bowel, bladder, bronchial tube in the lungs, or inside a duct in the breast or prostate gland. The cancer eventually grows from a microscopic clump to a visible mass. It then invades underlying tissue. As long as cells remain in one mass, the cancer is localized.
Later stages of cancer start in a process called metastasis where some of the cancer cells split off and go into the lymph channels or bloodstream to other parts of the body. If the disease is not arrested it will rapidly invade other parts of the body. Death is usually a more certain result then. Some people respond to radiation therapy and some do not. About one half of the known types of cancer are incurable at almost any stage. Of all or any cancer it is imperative to diagnose and treat it as soon as possible.
Causes of cancer:
Cancer can be caused by factors in our environment. These factors include a large number of chemical agents such as tobacco, tobacco smoke, asbestos fibers, and other occupational hazards. Other causes are X Ray radiation, nuclear bombs, sunlight, injury or repeated irritation, metal or plastic implants, flaws in the body’s immune system, genetic mistakes, and some scientists believe viruses also.
Major types of cancer:
– Lung Cancer – Kills more Americans than any other cancer.
– Colon Rectum Cancer – The 2nd leading cause of death in the United States.
– Skin cancer – The largest single source of malignancy in the United States.
– Oral Cancer – Strikes and estimated 24,000 people a year.
– Stomach Cancer – One of the most frequently diagnosed types of cancer in the United States.
– Bladder Cancer – Arises progressively with age & more common in men than women.
– Prostate Cancer – One of the most common cancers among men and 2nd only to lung cancer as lethal to men.
– Kidney Cancer – More likely to occur in young children or adults over age 40.
– Pancreatic Cancer – Accounts for 5% of all cancer deaths. Affects men and diabetics more often.Usually occurs after age 40.
– Liver Cancer – The result of metastasis from other parts of the body. Affects more men than women. Usually occurs after age 40.
– Brain Cancer – The result of metastasis from other body organs. It affects more children than adults.
– Larynx Cancer – Affects 8 times as many men as women. Usually occurs around age 60.
– Thyroid Cancer – It is relatively uncommon. The death rate is about 1% per every 200,000 people.
– Hodgkin’s Disease (lymphoma Cancer) – Affects mostly young adults, but can appear at any age. Affects more men than women.
– Leukemia- Especially lethal to children under the age of 15. Acute leukemia occurs at any age. Chronic leukemia usually doesn’t happen before age 40.
– Myelomas- Originate in bone marrow. Affects more men than women. Seldom found under the age of 40. Usually occurs around age 65.
Cancer’s 7 Warning Signs:
– Change in bowel or bladder habits
– A sore that does not heal.
– Unusual bleeding or discharge.
– Thickening or lump in breasts or elsewhere.
– Indigestion or difficulty swallowing.
– Obvious change in wart or mole.
– Nagging cough or hoarseness.
If you have any warning signs you should see your doctor immediately. The sooner cancer is diagnosed, the better your survival rate is. Remember if you put off going to your doctor because you are afraid he may find cancer, by the time you do go it could be too late. So please don’t take chances with your health or your life.