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Cancer Control: Are We At Last Gaining the Upper Hand?

Aug 17, 2007
Cancer control has taken America by storm. Thanks to better treatment options and earlier detection, cancer rates have declined significantly within the last couple of years, according to the American Cancer Society (ACS).

Preventing any type of cancer may be a possiblity through a healthy diet and healthy habits, but there is the chance it will not help in all cases. For example, genetics could be the cause for patients suffering from certain bone cancers because doctors are still unsure as to what really causes this disease.

According to the ACS, there will only be a little over two thousand cases of bone cancer in the United States for 2007. Of that number, only a thousand will actually die from the disease. Bone cancer can begin in the bone, but most often the cancer started in another organ and spread to the bones. In this instance, the cancer cells were malignant and filtered easily to other parts of the body. In these situations, patients end up receiving the same type of therapy as was used for the original cancer because the cells are the same.

Bone tumors get their name according to the region of the bone the cells are infecting. Bone tumors can be benign or malignant. If a bone tumor is benign, the patient will not see the cells spread to other parts of the body. There are several types of bone tumors, but the two most common forms are osteosarcoma and chondrosarcoma.

Osteosarcoma is the most common form of bone cancer found in patients between the ages of ten and thirty. There is the possibility that individuals between the ages of sixty and seventy will develop osteosarcoma, but rarely does one see this cancer in someone who is between the ages of thirty and sixty.

Males are also more susceptible to this common form of bone cancer than women. Chondrosarcoma affects the bone cartilage and usually occurs in patients after age twenty. Risks for developing this type of bone cancer continually rise as a person gets older and men and women are at equal risk of developing this disease.

Bone cancer protection is difficult to define mainly because there is no scientific method used to prevent it. There are risk factors associated with bone cancer such as having a previous disease or receiving treatment for a specific disease, like radiation therapy. Age can also play a role in who develops bone cancer. Because it is hard to prevent cancer when it comes to the human bone structure, everyone is at risk for developing this disease at some point in their life.

The most common diagnosis for bone cancer is pain. As the tumor grows, the pain worsens for the individual. Detecting the pain is the first part of bone cancer control. The next important step is detecting it. This can be done through x-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, bone scans or PET scans. Once the cancer is found and defined, a patient needs to work on a treatment. Normally treatments for bone cancer are chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or surgery. It is important when practicing any kind of cancer control that you discuss all your options with a doctor so you can find the right treatment for your body.

Cancer control is important to follow when you are dealing with any kind of tumor, especially those found in the bone. The research on this cancer is still relatively young, but more options are being discovered. Now individuals can receive genetic testing to see if they are at risk for a particular cancer. Genetics can help a person see where faults exist when cells reproduce in their body. But genetic testing can only carry someone so far. Lifestyle should make up the remaining role in cancer control methods.
About the Author
Andi Michaels has worked in healthcare and now runs health related websites on topics including cancer pain control as well as sites on lung diseases
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