Understanding Cancer

UNDERSTANDING CANCER

What is Cancer

Cancer is a group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body.

COMMON CANCER ARE:

  • -Bladder Cancer
  • -Breast Cancer
  • -Colorectal Cancer
  • -Kidney Cancer
  • -Lung Cancer - Non-Small Cell
  • -Lymphoma - Non-Hodgkin
  • -Melanoma
  • -Oral and Oropharyngeal Cancer
  • -Pancreatic Cancer
  • -Prostate Cancer
  • -Thyroid Cancer
  • -Uterine Cancer

 

Cancer Detection
Detecting cancer is a multi-stage process. Often, the patient will go to a doctor because of some symptom or other.Sometimes cancer is discovered by chance or from screening. The final cancer diagnosis is based on a pathologist's opinion.

Cancer screening
Different cancers are discovered in different ways. Detecting cancer, or cancer diagnosis, always entails detailed examination.

Following a clinical examination by a doctor, a patient may undergo different methods of imaging and be referred for laboratory testing. The final cancer diagnosis is based on a pathologist’s opinion.

Clinical examination
A general practitioner carries out a clinical examination of a patient. The doctor also considers the patient’s family background and charts the most common risk factors for cancer.

Radio Diagnosis
Cancer detection often involves radiological imaging. Imaging is also used to check the spread of cancer and progress of treatment, and to monitor cancer.
Oncological imaging is continually becoming more varied and accurate. Different imaging techniques aim to find the most suitable treatment option for each patient. Imaging techniques are often used in combination to obtain sufficient information.

The most common imaging method used to detect cancer and monitor its spread is Computed Tomography (CT), which provides cross-sectional imaging by computer. CT scans are made using X-rays.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a procedure that uses powerful magnetic fields. This does not generate ionising radiation. Situations where MRI is used include examining cancer or sarcoma in the head and neck region.
Ultra sound examination is useful for examining the cervix, pancreas, liver and kidneys. Needle biopsies can also be taken in ultra sound examinations.