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Weight increasing .swelling in legs and shoulders. Age 51 working in school. Uterus removed 7 years ago.
Ayurveda is a form of medicine that has been practiced for thousands of years and has many effective cure for some of the most complex diseases. Cancer, in this day and age, is one such complex disease and its incidence is increasing rapidly. It is always recommended to consult a Ayurveda specialist for severe cancer. Some of the common ingredients for treatment of uterine cancer through Ayurveda are mentioned here.
- Turmeric: Already a staple spice in many Indian dishes, turmeric as a herb in raw form and as a spice in powdered form, is touted the new wonder herb all across the world. It has been used as a traditional healing herb in India since ages. It has also been seen to be a very effective anti-inflammatory agent and thus it is very effective in stopping the growth of cancer cells.
- Green tea from the Camellia Sinensis plant: Green tea has been known to be effective in treating multiple types of cancer, aid in weight loss and also facilitate detoxification. Regular consumption of green tea from the Camellia Sinensis plant is known to fight the growth of cancer cells within the body; thus is a very effective in treating uterine cancer as well.
- Ashwagandha: This herb is not only used in Ayurveda, but has also been adopted by homeopathy as conventional medicine to make extracts. Ashwagandha is an adaptogen, which means it can adapt to the requirements of the body and then make the changes to provide support to the necessary areas. It is also very good at preventing the growth of cancer cells.
- Garlic: This spice is known to be good for multiple forms of cancer as it contains allicin, which is being hailed as one of the best fighters of inflammatory diseases. It also contains other types of phytochemicals and thus helps in detoxifying the body. It is very effective in fighting cancer cells and can arrest the growth of cancer within the body.
- Ginger: Ginger is extremely effective in the treatment of many ailments, if consumed regularly in controlled amounts. It has been known to be very effective in the treatment of colon cancer. Due to its properties, it is also known to be effective in the prevention of uterine and many other forms of cancer.
Ayurveda, an enigmatic yet enthralling science offers numerous treatment methods for uterine cancer. Here are a few:
- Matra Basti: Matra Basti is a special treatment in traditional ayurveda for chronic constipation, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, and various neurological disorders like multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, dystrophy and atrophy of nerves and muscle. In this treatment, certain herbal oils and herbal extracts are applied through the rectum on a daily basis. Matra Vasti has a lubricating, balancing, nourishing, strengthening and pacifying effect. It also works as rejuvenator, immune-modulator and nutrient and subdues elevated vata dosha. The treatment lasts for a period of 3 to 7 days.
- Pichu Dharanam for Soothing at Advance Stages of Uterine Cancer: It is a special treatment modality in Ayurveda where sterile medicated cotton swab is kept inside the vagina for a specific period of time. This comes under local treatment modalities specific to gynaecological diseases in females and is also done in ante natal care. Pichu means “cotton ball”. Yoni pichu is the application of a sterile cotton swab soaked in medicated oil or ghee in the vagina.
- Abhyanham: Abhyanga is a form of Ayurvedic medicine that involves massage of the body with large amounts of warm oil. It’s a complete body massage and really effective. The Abhyangam massage therapy is very beneficial and prevents degeneration and ceases the aging process. This therapy needs more positions to massage and comparing to other massage therapy, Abhyangam is very special. It usually involves oils prepared with specialized Ayurvedic herbs and essential oils for lymph drainage, detox, and relaxation. It has seven positions and it treats the whole body. It assures new healthy physical changes.
- Nasyam: Nasyam or errhine therapy is an Ayurvedic treatment excellent remedy for chronic sinusuitis, headache, throat diseases, epilepsy, catarrh, migraine, voice constraint, eye diseases and cervical spondylitis. In Ayurveda, the application of medical oils or powders through the nostrils is called Nasya. It is said in classical texts that the nostrils are the doorway to the brain. Nasya is an important method of treatment for illnesses of the cranial region. Nasya treatment - the forehead and neck regions of the patient are gently massaged with a suitable oil to induce sweating. Thereafter the patient is made to lie down on his back with his head bent slightly back. Warm oil is then dripped into both nostrils which the patient draws in.
We have more than 200 bones in our body and each of them is susceptible to bone cancer. However, long bones in the arms and legs are most susceptible to this condition. Bone cancer can be primary or secondary. Primary bone cancer involves uncontrolled and abnormal cell division within the bones while secondary bone cancer refers to cancer that originated somewhere else in the body and later spread to the bones. While children and adults are equally at risk for primary bone cancer, adults and elderly people are more susceptible to secondary bone cancer. If diagnosed early enough, bone cancer can be treated and even cured with surgery, chemotherapy or radiation.
Hence it is essential to recognize the signs and symptoms of bone cancer. Here’s what you should look out for.
- Pain in Bones: Pain is one the primary symptoms of bone cancer. As the tumour grows larger, this pain can become more intense. In its early stages, the pain may be experienced as a dull ache inside the bone or the affected part of the body. It may also increase or decrease according to your activity level or may be experienced only at night. However, not all bone pains signify ‘cancer’ as this is also a symptom associated with osteoporosis.
- Swelling: In some cases, the abnormal growth of bone cells can result in the formation of a lump of mass that may be felt through the skin. In other cases, the affected area may also show signs of swelling.
- Breaking of the Bone: Cancer can weaken the bones and make them more brittle. This may make the bones more susceptible to fractures. A bone breaking in an area that has been painful or sore for a long period of time may be a sign of cancer. This is known as a pathologic fracture.
- Reduced Flexibility: If the tumour is located near a joint, it may affect the range of movements possible and make simple actions uncomfortable. For example, a tumour around the knee may make walking and climbing stairs a painful exercise.
Other symptoms to look out for are sudden and drastic weight loss, tiredness, excessive sweating at night, fever and difficulty breathing in case cancer has spread to other organs. Since many of these symptoms are common to other medical disorders, you should consult a doctor immediately if you notice any of them. A physical examination and a couple of tests along with a biopsy will be required to confirm a diagnosis of bone cancer.
Many women develop uterine fibroids by the time they hit the age of 50 years and above. These are non-cancerous growths that may occur in the uterus. Most women go through severe bleeding and pain as well as discomfort as a result of these fibroids. Age, family history of the same condition, obesity or being overweight, eating habits and even ethnicity play a large role in deciding the risk of each individual patient. These fibroids can grow in the submucosal, intramural and subserosal areas.
Following are the common side effects of uterine fibroids:
- Frequent urination: Due to the pressure of the fibroids on the uterus, the patient may experience a constant feeling of fullness in the lower pelvic area of the body, which may lead to frequent filling of the bladder. This gives rise to frequent trips to the washroom for urination.
- Heavy Bleeding: Severe bleeding is one of the most common causes of the presence of these kinds of fibroids. The patient may experience a lot of bleeding during menstrual periods, as well as pain and cramps the rest of the time. The periods will also be very painful when there are fibroids in the uterus or the uterine lining.
- Painful Intercourse: It is a well-known fact that any kind of infection or growth as well as sores and other such ailments can lead to vaginal dryness as well as pain during sexual intercourse. This is true for uterine fibroids as well, which can lead to severe pain during sexual activity. These fibroids can also give rise to pain in the lumbar or lower back region.
- Abdomen Swelling: The abdomen may go through significant swelling in such a condition and the patient may even look like she is pregnant. The growth can push the shape of the abdomen outwards and create a full feeling.
- Pregnancy Complications: The presence of uterine fibroids can give rise to several complications during pregnancy and even after child birth. One of the most common problems in this case is bleeding, followed by more severe outcomes like miscarriage. The women suffering from uterine fibroids are at greater risk of undergoing a caesarean section for the delivery of the baby. The baby may also be born breech and a premature delivery may take place.
- Infertility: This is also a rare side effect of the uterine fibroids and is generally seen only in very severe cases.
- Cancer: Only one in every 1000 cases might transform into malignant tumours. These uterine fibroids are generally known to be non-malignant.
Any symptoms must be reported to a gynaecologist at the earliest to avoid any serious complications.
Cancer is the abnormal, uncontrolled growth of cells in a particular body part. With continued growth, pieces of this tissue travel through the blood to different body parts and continue to grow in the new area. This is known as metastases. Breast cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer and affects about 1 in 8 women in the USA. Read on to know more details of breast cancer – breast anatomy, causes, symptoms, risk factors, detection, prevention, and of course treatment.
Anatomy: The main function of the breast is lactation through its milk-producing tissue that are connected to the nipple by narrow ducts. In addition, there is surrounding connective tissue, fibrous material, fat, nerves, blood vessels and lymphatic channels which complete the structure. This is essential to know as most breast cancers develop as small calcifications (hardened particles) in the ducts or as small lumps in the breast tissue which then continues to grow into cancer. The spread can happen through lymphatic or blood flow to other organs.
Warning signs/symptoms: The following are some symptoms that need to be watched out for if you have a predisposition to breast cancer.
- A lump in either of the breasts or armpits
- Change in size, shape, or contour of either breast
- Redness of your breast or nipple
- Discharge of clear or bloody fluid
- Thickening of breast tissue or skin that lasts through a period
- Altered look or feel of the skin on the breast or the nipple (dimpled, inflamed, scaly, or puckered)
- One area on the breast that looks very different from the other areas
- Hardened area under the breast skin
Either one or a combination of these should be an indication to get a detailed checkup done. Early diagnosis results in controlling the disease with minimal treatment and reduced complications.
Causes and risk factors: The exact cause for breast cancer is yet to be pinned down. However, risk factors are clearly identified, and women with risk factors need to watch out for warning signs.
- Family history: Of all the risk factors, the family history is the most important. Breast cancer runs in families, and if there is a first-degree relative with the breast cancer, the chances of developing it are almost double. Two genes BRCA1 and BRCA2 are the carriers of the disease, and this testing can be done in women to identify if they are at risk.
- Family history of other cancers: Even if there is no breast cancer, if there are other cancers that run in the family, watch out.
- Age: Women over 50 are at higher risk of developing breast cancer.
- Race: Caucasian and Jewish women are at higher risk of breast cancer than African-American women.
- Hormones: Greater exposure to the female hormone estrogen increases the chances of developing breast cancer. Women who use birth control pills for contraception and hormone replacement after menopause are at a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
- Gynecologic milestones: Women who have abnormal menstrual milestones need to watch out. These include those who attain menarche before 12 years of age, get pregnant after 30, attain menopause after 55, and have menstrual cycles shorter than 26 days or longer than 29 days.
- Obesity and alcohol abuse are also likely to increase a woman’s chances of developing breast cancer.
Stages: Starting from stage 0, higher stages indicate advanced disease.
- Stage 0: The growth which has begun in the milk-producing tissue or the ducts has remained there (in situ) and not spread to any other area, including the rest of the breast.
- Stage I: The tissue slowly becomes invasive and has begun to affect the surrounding healthy tissue. It could have spread to the fatty breast tissue and some breast tissue may be found in the nearby lymph nodes.
- Stage II: The cancer at this stage grows considerably or spreads to other parts. There are chances that cancer may grow and also spread.
- Stage III: It may have spread to the bones or other organs but small amounts are present in up to 9 to 10 of the lymph nodes in the armpits and collar bones which makes it is difficult to fight.
- Stage IV: The cancer is widespread to far-flung areas like the liver, lungs, bones, and even the brain.
Screening: This is one of the most effective ways to identify the disease in its early stages. This will help in controlling cancer from spreading with minimal treatment.
- Self-examination: A thorough self-examination to look for changes in terms of shape, size, colour, contour, and firmness should be learned by all women. Watch for any discharge, sores, rashes, or swelling in the breasts, surrounding skin, and nipple. Examine them while standing and when lying down.
- In most women, annual screening mammograms are advised after the age of 40. However, in women who have a strong family history or genetic makeup, it is advisable to have screening mammograms starting at age 20 every 3 years and then annually from the age of 40.
- Women in high-risk categories should have screening mammograms every year and typically start at an earlier age.
- Ultrasound screening can also be given in addition to mammograms.
- Breast MRI is another way to screen for breast cancer if the risk is greater.
Breast Cancer Prevention: Now that there is so much awareness about causes and risk factors, there are definitely ways to prevent or delay the onset of the disease.
- Exercise and a healthy diet with reduced amount of alcohol are definitely effective in minimising the chances of developing cancer.
- Tamoxifen is used in women who are at high risk for breast cancer.
- Evista (raloxifene) which is used to treat osteoporosis after menopause. It is also widely used in preventing breast cancer.
- In high-risk women, breasts are surgically removed to prevent the development of cancer (preventive mastectomy).
Treatment: As with all cancers, treatment would depend on the stage at which it is identified and include a combination of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. As noted earlier, if you are at risk, look out for warning signs as early diagnosis is the key to maximum recovery.