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Cancer Treatment



Prompt Treatment of Cancer Cancer treatment has improved tremendously in the past 50 years. In the 1930s the disease was stopped in only about 20% of cancer patients. Now that percentage is about 41%. Surgery has been used to treat breast and intestinal cancer. This method has been used with success in many kinds of cancer. Surgery has cured more cancers than radiation and chemotherapy. Radiation is successful in stopping some forms of cancer such as cervical cancer. It penetrates a tumor without damaging the skin. These two methods, radiation and surgery are used when the cancer is localized (i.e., has not spread throughout the body).

Chemotherapy may be used for both local cancers and cancers that have spread. Chemotherapy is used to destroy malignant cells without excessive destruction of the normal cells. Some risks of chemotherapy are severe nausea, vomiting, and the loss of hair.

While great progress has been made in treatnent, all treatemt involves risk and side effects. There ia constant effort made to improve treatments and minimize risks.

Prevention

Primary prevention refers to steps taken to prevent a disease from ever developing. Prevention begins with the individual and includes healthy eating habits, moderate alcohol consumption regular physical activity, avoidance of cigarette smoking, moderation of exposure to the sun, regular medical checkups and minimizing exposure to pollutants in the air, water, and food.

Secondary prevention is early detection or screening. Routine and important screenings include getting a pap smear test for detection of early cervical cancer and getting a colonoscopy for early detection of colon cancer.


More on Cancer: See Cancer Causes and Incidence

What’s Ahead? Because of our aging population, it is expected that an increase will be seen in the numbers of seniors diagnosed with cancer. We will be attempting to provide a useful source of information for staying updated on current prevention and treatment approaches.





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The information about senior health presented here is not meant to be medical advice nor to act as a substitute for medical advice. Serious side-effects, including death, could result if one were to take any prescription medicine without the supervision of a physician.




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