Archive for the ‘ Cancer ’ Category

5 Lesser-Known Breast Cancer Symptoms You Ought to Know

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

It is no surprise that the sooner breast cancer is detected, the better the chances there are of curing it. Initially, though, breast cancer doesn’t show evident symptoms. If the lump is too small for you to feel, you may not even notice it. However, over time, if you begin to experience a sharp pain in your breast along with some tenderness, you ought to get it checked.

When it comes to cancer, detection is key. If you detect the disease in its early stages, you have a better chance at survival. If you recognize any of these symptoms, book an appointment with your doctor today!

1. Changes in shape or texture If one of your breast has the lump, chances are that there will be significant changes in the shape or size of the affected breast. For instance, one breast might droop or become larger than the other. If there is puckering of the skin or your breast starts to look red and inflamed, you ought to get it checked.

2. Thickening of the nipple If you are in the habit of checking your breasts regularly, you’ll be able to spot changes quickly. Is one of your nipple or both of them feeling thicker than usual? If yes, you might want to get it investigated. What’s more? Dimpling and itching of the skin shouldn’t be ignored as they are warning signals your body is giving you.

3. Nipple discharge It is true that nipple discharge happens for a variety of reasons and most of the time it is nothing to worry about. However, if the discharge occurs without squeezing the nipple or it happens in one breast and not the other, you need to visit your doctor. If the discharge has blood in it, it’s advisable to seek medical help.

4. Lump in the armpit More often than not, women look for lumps in their breasts. While that is necessary, you should not ignore swelling in or around your collarbone or armpit. Sometimes, these lumps are spotted even before you feel a lump in your breast. It’s worth seeking medical advice as soon as you notice this symptom.

5. Bloating Women tend to bloat easily. And while it is easy to overlook this symptom, if it occurs with weight loss or bleeding, it is a cause of worry. Constant bloating is a definite sign of cancer. Visit your doctor to know the cause of the problem.

Once you’ve successfully detected these symptoms, your doctor will advise you to get a mammogram done. Women of all ages are encouraged to examine their breasts regularly.


Wednesday, January 31st, 2018

What does Cancer…the dreaded disease actually mean?

Cancer, also called malignancy refers to any one of a large number of diseases characterized by the development of abnormal cells that divide uncontrollably and have the ability to infiltrate and destroy normal body tissue. Cancer often has the ability to spread throughout the body.

There are more than 100 types of cancer, including breast cancer, skin cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, and lymphoma. The symptoms vary depending on the type. Cancer treatment may include chemotherapy, radiation, and/or surgery.

Cancer Symptoms

Signs and symptoms caused by cancer will vary depending on what part of the body is affected. Some of them are listed below:

  1. Fatigue
  2. Lump or area of thickening that can be felt under the skin
  3. Weight changes, including unintended loss or gain
  4. Skin changes, such as yellowing, darkening or redness of the skin, sores that won’t heal, or changes to existing moles
  5. Changes in bowel or bladder habits or indigestion
  6. Persistent cough or trouble breathing
  7. Difficulty swallowing, hoarseness in voice
  8. Persistent, unexplained muscle or joint pain
  9. Persistent, unexplained fevers or night sweats
  10. Unexplained bleeding or bruising

Cancer is caused by changes (mutations) to the DNA within cells. The DNA inside a cell is packaged into a large number of individual genes, each of which contains a set of instructions telling the cell what functions to perform, as well as how to grow and divide. Errors in the instructions can cause the cell to stop its normal function and may allow a cell to become cancerous.

Risk factors

Factors known to increase your risk of cancer include:

  1. Your age – Cancer can take decades to develop. That’s why most people diagnosed with cancer are 65 or older. While it’s more common in older adults, cancer isn’t exclusively an adult disease — cancer can be diagnosed at any age.
  2. Your habits – Certain lifestyle choices are known to increase your risk of cancer. Smoking, drinking more than one alcoholic drink a day, excessive exposure to the sun, being obese, and having unsafe sex can contribute to cancer.
  3. Your family history – Only a small portion of cancers are due to an inherited condition. If cancer is common in your family, it’s possible that mutations are being passed from one generation to the next.
  4. Your environment – The environment around you may contain harmful chemicals that can increase your risk of cancer. Second hand smoke, chemicals in your home or workplace, such as asbestos and benzene, also are associated with an increased risk of cancer.

There’s no certain way to prevent cancer. But you can reduce your risk of getting cancer by taking the below steps:

  1. Stop smoking. If you smoke, quit. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. Smoking is linked to several types of cancer — not just lung cancer. Stopping now will reduce your risk of cancer in the future.
  2. Avoid excessive sun exposure. Harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun can increase your risk of skin cancer. Limit your sun exposure by staying in the shade, wearing protective clothing or applying sunscreen.
  3. Eat a healthy diet. Choose a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Select whole grains and lean proteins.
  4. Exercise most days of the week. Regular exercise is linked to a lower risk of cancer. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
  5. Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese may increase your risk of cancer. Work to achieve and maintain a healthy weight through a combination of a healthy diet and regular exercise.
  6. Drink alcohol in moderation, if you choose to drink. Do not start drinking if you don’t. If you choose to drink alcohol, limit yourself to one drink a day if you’re a woman of any age or a man older than age 65, or two drinks a day if you’re a man 65 years old or younger.
  7. Schedule cancer screening exams. Talk to your doctor about what types of cancer screening exams are best for you based on your risk factors.
Some crucial facts about Cancer:
  1. Cancer is the #2 killer in developed countries and #1 in underdeveloped countries.
  2. Scientific experts worldwide agree that at least half of all cancers and cancer-related deaths are preventable.
  3. A single cigarette contains 69 known cancer-causing carcinogens and over 4,000 chemicals.
  4. Cancer is the #1 disease killer of children.
  5. Globally, one in every eight deaths is caused by cancer. Approximately 70% of cancer deaths occur to those of low and middle incomes.
  6. One may experience no symptoms of ovarian cancer, lung cancer, or colon cancer until the cancer cells spread to other areas of your body. Early screening is imperative to catching these cancers in time.
  7. What you eat matters. Green tea, berries, turmeric, avocados, garlic, kale, and even dark chocolate can naturally trigger cancer cells to self destruct via apoptosis.
  8. If anyone among your family or friends is showing any cancer related symptoms, waste no time. Meet our team of specialists at the Centre for Cancer at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital. Please see below link for more details:

1st Dec, World AIDS Day

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

AIDS is not a virus but a set of symptoms caused by the HIV virus. HIV is a virus that attacks the immune system, which is our body’s natural defence against illness. White blood cells are an important part of the immune system. HIV infects and destroys certain white blood cells called CD4+ cells. If too many CD4+ cells are destroyed, the body can no longer defend itself against infection.

The last stage of HIV infection is AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). People with AIDS have a low number of CD4+ cells and get infections or cancers that rarely occur in healthy people. These can be deadly.

If HIV is left untreated, it may take up to 10 or 15 years for the immune system to be so severely damaged it can no longer defend itself at all. However, the speed HIV progresses will vary depending on age, health and background.

Basic facts about AIDS

  1. AIDS stands for acquired immune deficiency syndrome.
  2. AIDS is also referred to as advanced HIV infection or late-stage HIV.
  3. Treatment for HIV means that more people are staying well, with fewer people developing AIDS.
  4. There is effective antiretroviral treatment available so people with HIV can live a normal, healthy life.
  5. The earlier HIV is diagnosed, the sooner treatment can start – leading to better long term health. Hence, regular testing for HIV is important.

What causes HIV?

HIV infection is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus. You can get HIV from contact with infected blood, semen, or vaginal fluids. Some common reasons are listed below:

  1. Unprotected sex with someone who has HIV.
  2. Sharing drug needles with someone who is infected with HIV.
  3. The virus can also be passed from a mother to her baby during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding.

What are the symptoms?

HIV may not cause symptoms early on. People who do have symptoms may mistake them for the flu or mono. Common early symptoms include:

  1. Fever.
  2. Sore throat.
  3. Headache.
  4. Muscle aches and joint pain.
  5. Swollen glands (swollen lymph nodes).
  6. Skin rash.

Some common myths and facts related to AIDs:

1.Myth: You can get HIV just by being around HIV-positive individuals in your daily life.

Fact: HIV is transmitted when infected material (blood, semen, vaginal fluid, breast milk) comes in direct contact with a mucous membrane (mouth, vagina, anus), damaged tissue, or is injected directly into the bloodstream. HIV is not spread by kissing, hugging, sharing food/drink, toilet seats, sneezes/coughs, sweat, touching, or through insect bites.

2. Myth: HIV can be cured.

Fact: There is no cure for HIV. With treatment, HIV-positive individuals can control the virus and live long, healthy lives.

3. Myth: Being diagnosed with HIV is a death sentence.

Fact: The HIV virus was earlier less understood, how it was transmitted, or how to treat it. As a result of this lack of knowledge, combined with the stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS, many of those who were diagnosed died. With better awareness and advanced medication people can live long healthy lives.

4. Myth: If both partners are HIV positive, use of condoms is not required.

Fact: Do not forget that antiretroviral therapy (ART) will not protect you from unwanted pregnancy or other STDs. Additionally, it is possible for an HIV-positive individual to become infected with a second strain of HIV, which is called HIV re-infection. This could potentially hamper the current treatment.

5. Myth: The elderly do not have to worry about HIV

Fact: HIV does not discriminate against age, gender, race, sexual orientation, class, or any other identifier. Age doesn’t stop people from having sex and if you are having sex, then you are at some risk of contracting HIV or other STDs.

Let us all get together and bring an end to the AIDs epidemic. Over the years public efforts have spread the anti-AIDs message strongly leading to reduction in deaths due to AIDs. Let us be responsible citizens.

To get yourself tested for HIV, please see our below website to avail of the most suitable health check-up package for you:

Breast Cancer

Saturday, October 7th, 2017
What is Breast Cancer?

Breast cancer is an uncontrolled growth of breast cells.  Cancer occurs as a result of mutations, or abnormal changes, in the genes responsible for regulating the growth of cells and keeping them healthy. These abnormal cells keep dividing without control or order and form a tumor. A tumor can be benign (not dangerous to health) or malignant (has the potential to be dangerous). Malignant tumors are cancerous. If left unchecked, malignant cells eventually can spread beyond the original tumor to other parts of the body. Breast Cancer is a malignant tumor that develops from cells in the breast.

Breast cancer can have an impact on many aspects of your daily life. It is essential to seek treatment and be updated with the latest breast cancer breakthroughs. Everyone copes with their diagnosis differently and also responds differently to the treatment.

Know the symptoms:

Be vigilant about breast cancer detection. If you notice any changes in your breasts, such as a new lump or skin changes, consult your doctor immediately. Depending on your personal history and age, begin mammogram screenings also after the age of 40 years or earlier if needed.

Initially, breast cancer may not cause any symptoms. A lump may be too small for you to feel or notice on your own. Do keep a note of any unusual changes like below, as they may be a symptom of breast cancer:

  • swelling of all or part of the breast
  • skin irritation or dimpling
  • breast pain
  • nipple pain or the nipple turning inward
  • redness, scaliness, or thickening of the nipple or breast skin
  • a nipple discharge other than breast milk
  • a lump in the underarm area
Breast cancer prevention: How to reduce your risk

Adopt healthy habits, understand what you can do to reduce your breast cancer risk. Here are some ways to reduce your risk:

  • Limit alcohol intake – The more alcohol you drink, the greater your risk of developing breast cancer. Limit yourself to less than 1 drink per day as even small amounts increase risk.
  • Quit Smoking – Studies suggest a link between smoking and breast cancer risk, particularly in premenopausal women.
  • Control your weight – Being overweight or obese increases the risk of breast cancer. This is especially true if obesity occurs later in life, particularly after menopause.
  • Be physically active – Physical activity can help you maintain a healthy weight, which, in turn, helps prevent breast cancer. For most healthy adults at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity weekly is recommended along with some strength training.
  • Breast-feed – Breast-feeding might play a role in breast cancer prevention. The longer you breast-feed, the greater the protective effect.
  • Limit dose and duration of hormone therapy – Combination hormone therapy for more than three to five years increases the risk of breast cancer. If you’re taking hormone therapy for menopausal symptoms, ask your doctor about other options.
  • Limit radiation exposures – Medical-imaging methods, such as computerized tomography, use high doses of radiation. Avoid unnecessary radiation exposures as they are linked to breast cancer.
Things to know about Breast Cancer:
  • 1. It does not affect only elderly people– Unfortunately, women in their 20s/30s/40s can also get breast cancer. Awareness is important.
  • 2. Early detection is not a cure – Although detecting breast cancer early is associated with a better prognosis, it is not a guaranteed cure.
  • 3. It’s not always a lump – Breast cancer most often presents itself as a lump in the breast. However other possible signs should not be ignored like itchiness of the breast, redness or swelling, puckering of the skin, and changes in the nipple.
  • 4. Breast cancer isn’t just one disease – Breast cancer has many types and subtypes, such as HER2-positive, estrogen-positive, triple-negative, invasive, non-invasive, and inflammatory breast cancer. Different breast cancers are treated differently.
  • 5. Men can get breast cancer too – Another misconception about breast cancer is it is strictly a women’s disease. Even though the vast majority of breast cancer cases are female, men can indeed get it too, their risk is less than 1%.

The greatest misconception that people have about cancer is that all patients eventually die of cancer. It is very important to realise that breast cancer is one of the most curable cancers in the human body. All patients who are cured live a normal life for their entire lifespan. Regular follow ups after the treatment are essential and help identify relapse if any.

Our Breast Clinic at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital is well-equipped with state-of-the-art radiation machines and day care chemo suites. We have a dedicated service that has been created to specifically diagnose and treat the entire spectrum of conditions affecting mammary gland. If you or a family member is suffering from Breast Cancer do visit us. For further details please refer below link:

Cancer Awareness Day

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Cancer is a malignant growth or tumour resulting from an uncontrolled division of cells. It can start at any place in the body. It starts when cells grow out of control and crowd out normal cells. This makes it hard for the body to work the way it should.

Cancer can affect all living cells in the body, at all ages and in both genders. The causation is multi factorial and the disease process differs at different sites.

It is known that over one-third of cancers are preventable, and one-third potentially curable provided they are diagnosed early in their course. The control of cancer requires the effective implementation of knowledge with awareness.

Some facts, risks and preventions about cancer:
  • There are 2-2.5 million cases of Cancer Prevalent in India at any point in time.
  • 7-9 lac cancers are detected each year in India- on an average 8-10 cancers are detected daily.
  • Cancers are the 2nd leading cause of death in India that is likely to double by 2015 and triple by 2030.
  • More than 2/3rd of cancer cases are related to life style factors, hence preventable.
  • More than 1/3rd cancers (2 out of every 5) are tobacco related and other due to faulty diet habits and social habits.
  • The unhealthy lifestyle that increases the risk of cancer is tobacco consumption (cigarette smoking, chewing tobacco etc.) increased consumption of animal fats & oils, sedentary life style, obesity, alcohol consumption and exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • The early the cancer is detected the better is the cure rate and prognosis.
  • Most of the cancers are silent for long time and give no initial warning.
  • Once cancer produces evident symptoms and signs, it is already in advanced stage and usually difficult to treat.

Being aware about Cancer is the need of the hour. In majority of the cases, cancer is detected in the advanced stage. Treatment of any cancer in advanced stage is difficult, prolonged and expensive. Treatment results in India are about 20% less than what is observed for similar conditions in more developed countries, mostly due to late diagnosis and inappropriate treatment. Sadly, 2/3rds of the cancers are detected in the advanced stage.

Get yourself checked by a doctor if you have any of these symptoms:
  • Change in bowel or bladder habits
  • A wound that doesn’t heal
  • Unusual bleeding or discharge from any natural orifice or weight loss
  • Thickening or lump in breast or elsewhere
  • Ingestion difficulty in swallowing
  • Obvious change in wart or mole
  • Nagging cough or hoarseness of the voice
How can we help raise awareness about Cancer?
  • Make healthy food choices.Cancer risk can be reduced by following a fresh healthy plant based diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. Consumption of salty, fatty and processed food items.
  • Say No to Tobacco. Tobacco chewing or consumption of cigarettes drastically increases your chance of developing cancer. While chewing tobacco causes oral and pancreatic cancer,smoking causes cancer of the lungs, bladder, cervix and kidneys.
  • Make a conscious effort to reduce your sugar intake. Experts believe that sugar is a major cancer fuel Cancer cellsderive their power from sugar hence the risk of this deadly disease can be minimized drastically by cutting down your sugar intake.
  • Always safeguard yourself before stepping out in the sun. Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays can damage your skin and eyes. Always wear a sunscreen and sunglasses to protect yourself.
  • Research suggests that approximately 30 minutes of physical activity on a daily basis can decrease your cancer risk.
  • Water is the true elixir. Always keep yourself hydrated as it helps to flush out toxins through urine.
  • Try to limit your use of Mobile phones as excessive radiations damage the nerves in your brain.

Meet our team of doctors at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital for any cancer related queries. Our Centre for Cancer is equipped to handle all kinds of cases at various stages. The centre has sub-specialists proficient in dealing with different types of cancers. For further details please visit below link: