Internal Medicine Specialist Dr. Züleyha Özer Yazgan from Dr. Suat Günsel University of Kyrenia Hospital informs about the common cancer diseases and types of cancer
Nowadays cancer remains the most important public health problem. Cancer disease, which still takes its first place among the common causes of death, is not only a deadly disease but also causes serious losses in the country's economy due to the injuries it causes, the high cost of treatment and loss of work power.Consequently, early diagnosis and treatment of the disease is very important. The World Cancer Declaration, originally launched in 2006 and updated at the World Cancer Leaders’ Summit in November 2013, is a call for action to reduce the burden of cancer at the global level. In many countries, National Cancer Control programs have been established and campaigns have been organized to develop social awareness. There is an active National Cancer Control program also in Turkey, which is in use since 2008, and with active cancer registry it’s possible to gather reliable cancer data.
According to the World Cancer Statistics, which is published in 2012, the most commonly diagnosed cancers worldwide were the lung, breast and colon, and the most lethal cancer types were the lung, liver and stomach.
The International Cancer Agency has particularly mentioned the increase in breast cancer. According to the Agency compared with previous estimates the prevalence of breast cancer in women has increased by 20% and deaths by 14%.Breast cancer represents one in four of all cancers in women worldwide. Some of the risk factors associated with breast cancer; family history of breast cancer, early menstrual period, late menopause and obesity.Behavior changes such as weight loss, regular exercise can effectively reduce the risk.
However, lifestyle changes to minimize risk factors as well as breast cancer screening for early diagnosis of the disease are the most effective methods which can reduce breast cancer mortalityand disease frequency. Mammography is the most effective method in recent years, even if there have been some debates over it. Voluntary patients are the base of cancer screenings and its success depends on the participation of our women. For this reason, it is important to inform women about causes, signs and prevention of breast cancer and about screening process.
Hundred percent successful treatment of breast cancer depends on early diagnosis
In the later stages, life expectancy will be limited and on the other hand treatment choices will decrease the life quality of the patient.At centers like KETEM where community-based scans are conducted, 85% of the diseases diagnosed at an early stage.We shouldn’t forget that early detection saves lives. Breast conserving surgery andbreast reconstructionare vital links.Cervical cancer is the worldwide fourth most common cancer in women. Especially, it is recommended to have a smear test after 3 years of initiating sexual activity or for all women over 21 years old. On the other hand, specialists emphasizethe importance of the HPV vaccine.
Colorectal cancer is another type of cancer for which World Health Organization recommends screening.
Only 40% of patients with colorectal cancer are diagnosed when the disease is at a local stage.Since the course of disease is closely related to its status at diagnosis stage, the detection of colorectal cancer at an asymptomatic stage by screening is useful.Screening programs use fecal occult blood testing,sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy and imaging methods. Environmental and genetic factors increase the develop ofcolorectal cancer.
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Although the genetic factors playsignificant role in the number of cases,non-genetic features are also quite high. We recommend colonoscopyevery yearfor those with a first-degree relative diagnosed with colorectal or rectum cancer or for patients with ulcerative colitis or adenomatous polyps. Also colonoscopy is recommended for all individuals every 3-5 years over the age of 50. Smoking and drinking, unhealthy diet, obesity, diabetes, etc., as well as all cancer diseases, also increases the risk for colorectal cancer.Early detection of cancer is possible with screening methods and by the help of lifestyle changes such as healthy diet and increased daily physical activity it won’t be deadly destiny. It’s importantto have regular physician control even when you are healthy. Vaccines and screening tests for hepatitis B virus and HPV infections, whichcan cause cancer, should be done regularly.