What Is Cancer?
Cancer is actually a group of lots of related diseases that all involve cells. Cells are the very small systems that comprise all living things, including the human body. There are billions of cells in everyone's body.
Cancer happens when cells that are not typical grow and spread out really fast. Typical body cells grow and divide and understand to stop growing. With time, they also die. Unlike these regular cells, cancer cells simply continue to grow and divide out of control and don't die when they're expected to.
Cancer cells generally group or clump together to form tumors (say: TOO-mers). A growing growth ends up being a lump of cancer cells that can ruin the typical cells around the growth and damage the body's healthy tissues. This can make someone very ill.
Often cancer cells break away from the initial tumor and travel to other areas of the body, where they keep growing and can go on to form brand-new growths. This is how cancer spreads. The spread of a tumor to a new place in the body is called transition (say: meh-TASS-tuh-sis).
Reasons for Cancer
You probably know a kid who had chickenpox-- perhaps even you. However you most likely don't know any kids who have actually had cancer. If you loaded a big football stadium with kids, probably only one kid because stadium would have cancer.
Doctors aren't sure why some people get cancer and others do not. They do understand that cancer is not infectious. You can't catch it from somebody else who has it-- cancer isn't triggered by bacteria, like colds or the influenza are. So don't be afraid of other kids-- or anyone else-- with cancer. You can speak to, have fun with, and hug somebody with cancer.
Kids can't get cancer from anything they do either. Some kids think that a bump on the head causes brain cancer or that bad people get cancer. This isn't real! Kids do not do anything incorrect to get cancer. But some unhealthy habits, particularly smoking or drinking excessive alcohol every day, can make you a lot more likely to get cancer when you become an adult.
Learning about Cancer
It can take a while for a physician to find out a kid has cancer. That's because the symptoms cancer can cause-- weight reduction, fevers, inflamed glands, or feeling extremely worn out or ill for a while-- usually are not triggered by cancer. When a kid has these problems, it's frequently triggered by something less severe, like an infection. With medical screening, the doctor can figure out what's causing the difficulty.
If the physician presumes cancer, she or he can do tests to find out if that's the problem. A doctor might purchase X-rays and blood tests and suggest the individual visit an oncologist (say: on-KAH-luh-jist). An oncologist is a medical professional who looks after and deals with cancer patients. The oncologist will likely run other tests to learn if someone really has cancer. If so, tests can determine what type of cancer it is and if it has actually spread out to other parts of the body. Based upon the outcomes, the medical professional will choose the very best way to treat it.
One test that More helpful hints an oncologist (or a surgeon) may perform is a biopsy (say: BY-op-see). During a biopsy, a piece of tissue is eliminated from a growth or a location in the body where cancer is presumed, like the bone marrow. Do not stress-- somebody getting this test will get unique medicine to keep him or her comfortable during the biopsy. The sample that's collected will be examined under a microscope for cancer cells.
The quicker cancer is found and treatment begins, the better somebody's possibilities are for a complete healing and treatment.
Dealing With Cancer Thoroughly
Cancer is treated with surgical treatment, chemotherapy, or radiation-- or often a mix of these treatments. The option of treatment depends upon:
Surgical treatment is the earliest form of treatment for cancer-- 3 out of every 5 people with cancer will have an operation to remove it. During surgery, the doctor tries to get as numerous cancer cells as possible. Some healthy cells or tissue may also be eliminated to ensure that all the cancer is gone.
Chemotherapy (say: kee-mo-THER-uh-pee) is using anti-cancer medications (drugs) to deal with cancer. These medications are in some cases taken as a tablet, however normally are provided through an unique intravenous (state: in-truh-VEE-nus) line, likewise called an IV. An IV is a tiny plastic catheter (straw-like tube) that is put into a vein through someone's skin, typically on the arm. The catheter is connected to a bag that holds the medicine. The medicine flows from the bag into a vein, which puts the medicine into the blood, where it can travel throughout the body and attack cancer cells.