What is Cancer?
Cancer involves the rapid and uncontrollable growth of abnormal cells. It’s one of the leading causes of death across the globe that can be managed to some degree with chemotherapy treatment as well as other therapies. Cancer can originate almost anywhere in the body and spread to other areas, causing disruptions in regular bodily functions.
Gene mutations are the primary cause of different types of cancers. They can be inherited or occur due to environmental factors. These factors, also called carcinogens, can include exposure to UV light, smoking tobacco, drinking alcohol, inhaling asbestos, and being infected by pathogens.
Symptoms of Cancer
Symptoms of cancer can vary based on the affected area. However, most of them are accompanied by the following early signs:
- Skin changes
- Fevers or night sweats that are unexplained and persistent
- Sudden weight loss or gain
- Persistent pain and fatigue
Depending on the type of cancer and the degree of progression, you may notice any of the following symptoms listed below. Chemotherapy treatment can control and, in some cases, treat cancers that are causing these symptoms.
- Moles that are new, changing, or unusual
- Abnormal lumps
- Trouble breathing
- Difficulty swallowing
- Changes in bowel habits
- Unexplained bleeding and bruising
- Persistent coughing and/or chest pain
- Indigestion and discomfort after eating
These symptoms are not definite indicators that you have cancer. However, it’s best to consult a doctor immediately if you notice any of them.
Types of Cancer Treatment
Cancer treatments differ based on the type and stage of the disease. Their goal is to reduce cancerous cells without damaging the normal ones.
The main types of therapy include:
Surgery directly removes the tumor. It is usually used with other forms of treatment to ensure all the cancer cells are eliminated.
Chemotherapy treatment uses medications to kill cancer cells. It also aims to reduce tumor size and decrease the number of abnormal cells to prevent the disease from spreading.
Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams (most oftenly x-rays) to kill defective cells or slow their growth through damaging their DNA and by doing so, shrinking the tumors. Brachytherapy is radiotherapy done inside your body by placing a sealed radiation source inside or next to the area that requires treatment. External beam radiation is performed outside your body.
Other forms of treatment that may benefit people with cancer include:
TPN, or total parenteral nutrition, delivers nutrients to an individual intravenously. It is often administered along with traditional cancer treatments to prevent malnutrition.
Stem Cell Transplant
Stem cell or bone marrow transplants are usually used to treat leukemia and other cancer types. It also allows doctors to administer more powerful chemotherapy treatments or higher radiation doses.
Immunotherapy or biological therapy uses the person’s own immune system to fight off cancer cells. It works by boosting or changing how the immune system works, enabling it to find and attack cancer cells.
Manage Cancer With AmeriPharma™ Specialty Care
AmeriPharma™ Specialty Care offers different types of cancer treatments in 40+ US states. Our URAC-accredited specialty pharmacy provides copay assistance for various chemotherapy medications, including Herceptin, Avastin, and Rituxan, to reduce your treatment costs.
If you have been diagnosed with cancer, let us help reduce the burden of your treatment. From insurance approvals to delivering specialty medications to your door, we will assist you every step of the way so you can focus on your health. Our team of specialists is available 24/7 to answer any of your questions. Contact us to find help today.