We often associate cancer to too much stress. But how are they related?
When we’re stressed, our body makes certain, so-called “stress” hormones can deal with it. In many cancers, these hormones bind with cancer cells. This makes it easier for the tumor to grow and the cancer to spread. Stress also can affect our immune system.
The word “cancer” is used to refer to any of the 200 different diseases, affecting many parts of the body, that are characterized by the uncontrolled growth of cells that invade and damage the body’s normal tissues. Cancer can begin in organ tissues as well as the skin, bone, cartilage, fat, muscle, blood vessels, immune system, and bone marrow.
These cells can form tumors, although not all cancers do. In some cases, cancer cells spread from their original site to other places in the body via the bloodstream or lymphatic system, a process and medical complication called metastasis.
The origin of the word cancer is credited to the Greek physician Hippocrates (460-370 BC), who is considered the “Father of Medicine.” He used the terms carcinos and carcinoma to describe non-ulcer forming and ulcer-forming tumors.
The word cancer came from a Greek words karkinos to describe carcinoma tumors by Hippocrates (460–370 B.C), but he was not the first to discover this disease. Some of the earliest evidence of human bone cancer was found in mummies in ancient Egypt and in ancient manuscripts dates about 1600 B.C.
Cancer occurs when a cell’s DNA becomes damaged and cannot be repaired. Cancer starts in just one cell, and there are several stages in cancer development — from precancerous changes to malignant tumors.
Different cancers develop at different rates. Many different factors can play a role, from genetics to lifestyle habits (such as smoking, diet, and sun-tanning) to environmental exposures to harmful substances. Viral and bacterial infections also can lead to certain cancers, such as the hepatitis virus in liver cancer, Helicobacter pylori in stomach cancer, and the HPV virus in cervical cancer. The immune system’s function also is key to controlling or preventing cancer.
‘Healing is always possible even when curing is not’
We always have that general belief that cancer is incurable but upon listening to some cancer specialists or oncologists, we could generalize that there’s life even with cancer but especially when the disease is already gone.
Dr. Donald I. Abram, chief of the Hematology and Oncology Dept. at the San Francisco General Hospital in California said that “healing is always possible even when curing is not.” In one of his lectures, he presented that complementary or alternative medicines can fit into the life of malignant cancer patient.
Based on studies, he said that stress is a kind of adrenaline which kills lymphocytes, the building blocks of the immune system and stress is a cortisol which is a steroid hormone, an immune suppressant.
Stress likewise increases spread of cancer, according to Abram, a cancer specialist for over 30 years.
The oncologist stressed that cancer cannot be prevented but its risk can be reduced. “Lifestyle” is the key he said, adding that many cancer patients are “looking for cancer cure in all wrong places,” quoting another oncologist in a published article.
Dr. Abram explained that even today, the use of complementary alternative treatment is far from compelling. Patients also should be advised not to use any unproven alternative therapies in place of traditional therapies. However, treatment with alternative therapy should not be delayed if this is found to be effective.
Alternative therapies, even vitamins can interact with chemotherapy and radiation treatment, so doctors should be told what the patients are taking, according to Dr. Abram.
The oncologist said that based on research, the way the medical or health clinicians bring themselves fully in connection with those whom they care, is one of the most crucial factors supporting how people heal – how these patients respond to these therapeutic efforts.
Integrative Cancer-risk reduction
Focusing mainly on lifestyle issues can lower the risk of cancer. This means that it is necessary to maintain a healthy body mass index and the need for a regular aerobic and resistance exercise. A dietary guidelines should be followed or strictly observed.
Complementary therapies maybe useful interventions in smoking cessation. Hypnosis and guided imagery is another therapy along with acupuncture.
It is also important that one should be judicious in the use or taking of supplements that may have value in decreasing inflammation, boosting innate immunity.
Studies and researches have summed up lowering the risk of getting cancer through the following: getting regular cancer screening tests. Regular screening tests can catch some cancers early, when they’re small, have not spread, and are easier to treat; getting to and staying at a healthy weight; exercise regularly; eating a healthy diet, avoid tobacco; limiting alcohol.
Role of complementary and alternative medicines in symptom management and palliative care
The roles of complementary medicines, according to Dr. Abram are: to relieve or prevent treatment side effects like reducing side effects of chemo or radiotherapy; enhance tolerance of conventional therapy; promote relaxation; reduce stress; relieve pain; improve sleep and generally enhance life quality.
Further these complementary and alternative medicines improve immune function; alter disease progression which means preventing recurrence or metastasis so this will result to prolonged survival.
Treatment of Cancer
A cutting-edge technology in treatment of cancer is now available.
Customized Cancer Therapy aims to improve treatment outcomes for all cancer patients. It is part of complex diagnostic and prognostic tools that can more accurately assess the health status of new patients.
Photodynamic Therapy can extend the lives of patients with cancers in advanced stages. PDT applications are now used for treatment of pre-cancerous disorders, age-related deterioration (small skin spots) and communicable diseases because of nominal invasiveness and selective remedial effects. The therapy is beneficial due to its affordability, localized treatment, non-toxic outcome despite repeated treatment, and stimulation of immunity. Possibilities for cure are higher with more lasting control of tumors and more chances for outpatient therapy.
PDT has two essential components. One is the so-called photo sensitizer and the other is described as optical radiation in which the wavelength matches up with the photo sensitizer’s absorption capacity.
It is effective for certain kinds of cancers like breast, lung, esophagus, and cervix wherein the usual treatments are not appropriate. PDT relieves symptoms in patients in where the cancer obstructs the airway, or in which the cancer cells slightly invade surrounding tissues. It is extremely selective and focused.
It is free from surgical risks, severe impairment and general complications. PDT sessions can be repeated many times as required. One PDT procedure facilitates treatment and fluorescent cancer diagnosis. Many patients show complete tumor absorption into the circulation of cells or tissue after a single session. This can be performed even under outpatient conditions.
This application consists of three key components. These are the Photosensitizer, source of light and tissue oxygen.
The light source’s wavelength or length of wave cycle must be enough to stimulate the photosensitizer so it can produce free radicals. The free radical is described in science as any uncharged molecule which is short-lived and highly reactive. Free radicals are produced by means of transfers from substrate molecules and highly-reactive oxygen state or singlet oxygen.
Free radical is categorized as Type 1 while Singlet oxygen is said to be Type 2.
With the advent of technology in modern medicines, everything seems to be possible, including total eradication of cancer in the future.
ILACM employs the most effective natural and complementary treatment for multitude of chronic illnesses. ILACM always begins its medical treatment recommendation through non pharmacologic approaches with which the result is instant and complement it with natural remedy approaches to achieve optimum long term results.
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