Approach to Care/Genetic Alterations and Cancer

Since cancer is a genetic issue and is very detrimental to human health, the primary purpose of its discussion is to come up with solutions on how to deal with the situation to contain and control it. It is important to learn what cancer entails, the triggers to the genetic alterations and find out how to evade such triggers. When affected by cancer, it is important to learn and adopt an appropriate approach to health care. The aforementioned is due to the fact that it can be difficult to handle when treated at the late stages (Hartmann & Loprinzi, 2012). The above can be done only if one is well informed about cancer, a life-threatening condition. The development of cancerous cells transitions from stage to stage. However, this essay will center its focus in defining cancer in general and its possible effects to patients diagnosed for the same. Globally, it is well known that the level at which cancer affects and eradicates people has risen over the years. When discussing the topic about cancer, a lot comes in mind concerning oneт€™s health. Cancer can be described as a condition where cells of the body rapidly begin to divide and can move or spread to the neighboring tissues. The purpose of this paper is to exemplify the approach to the care of cancer as well as illustrate the complications associated with it.

Cancer develops because of other cells, which in turn forms a tumor that grows with time. These extra cells come about when new cells are generated to replace the old ones that develop abnormal characteristics. The aforementioned translates to damaged cells or mature cells tend to survive instead of dying to be replaced by new ones. Therefore, the new ones form extra cells that also divide continuously resulting in the growth of a cancerous tumor. As mentioned, most tumors are malignant hence tend to spread to surrounding tissues making them harmful (Hartmann & Loprinzi, 2012). It is significant to note that benign tumor necessarily not a malignant tumor. For a fact, malignant tumors are cancer. Malignant tumors are cancerous in nature. When one is diagnosed with a malignant tumor, it is advisable for one to be tested for possible cancer.

Diagnosis and Staging

It is an advisable health practices for one to schedule checkup routine concerning one’s health progress. The aforementioned is important because it allows for the diagnosis of the cancer cells at early stages. Henceforth, the cancer can be handled easily without threatening one’s life. Any symptoms that develop and persist must be taken seriously and it is recommended to see a doctor to find out their cause. It might be a tumor developing. Therefore, being ignorant of such small issues is not an option. When one presumes that the signs and symptoms one observes in oneт€™s body might be because of cancer, it is advisable to see a doctor. The doctor must perform diagnosis on the patient to ascertain whether it is cancer or any other disease. If the doctor finds out that cancer might be developing from the screening test results, he or she can perform a physical exam. The doctor may ask about oneт€™s family and personal medical history as well order scans, procedures, lab tests or other lab tests. Imaging methods such us ultrasound, nuclear scan, CT scan, MRI, PET scan, and x-rays can be done for analysis of cancer. Most doctors usually prefer biopsy to diagnose cancer (Lacroix, 2011). The aforementioned is where a sample of the tissue is removed for study (Fleishman, 2012). A pathologist then observes and examines the sample under a microscope to find out whether it is cancer. The sample can be obtained with a needle, with an endoscope, through either excisional or incisional surgery.

After being diagnosed with cancer, staging is done. Stage denotes to what extent is your cancer. For instance, the size of the tumor and whether it has spread. Adaptation is crucial when dealing with cases of cancer. The most common type of staging is TNM staging system. The abbreviation T describes the size of the parent tumor and ascertains whether the tumor has invaded nearby tissues or not. The abbreviation N represents the nearby lymph nodes that have been affected by the growth of the tumor. Finally, the abbreviation M describes distant and far metastasis. The latter statement basically screens for the possibility of the cancer to spread from one body organ to another.

Cancer Complications

It is significant to note that cancer comes with various complications. Cancer patients are faced with many complications.

First, it is prudent to note that pain is one of the complications a cancer p-patient is faced with. However, it is worth pointing out that not all cancers are painful. Secondly, fatigue is part of complications that cancer patients face. Fatigue steps in due to the mere fact that cancer patients are faced with routine chemotherapy sessions that affect the body. Most cancer patients have to undergo chemotherapy sessions to control the growth and spread of the cancerous tumors (Complications, 2017). Similarly, difficulty in breathing is part of the complications that affects cancer patients. Cancer patients in most instances have difficulty in breathing as the cancer cells keep multiplying and spreading. The only remedy for the latter is to treat cancer through methods such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

Diarrhea or constipations are also complications that arise as a result of cancer. Cancer affects oneт€™s bowel system hence diarrhea and constipation are a common phenomenon. It is also significant to note that the weight loss is another complication associated with cancer. The cancer cells т€˜stealsт€™ food from normal body cells and deprived the body of nutrients. However much one eats more calories, weight loss is evident as the cancer cells are more superior hence deprive the body of its wanted nutrients. Then again, artificial nutrition via tubes through the veins and stomach does not help stop weight loss in cancer patients.

Complications such as chemical changes are associated with cancer. Changes such as excessive thirst, confusion, constipation and frequent urination may be complications that area associated with cancer. Similarly, an unusual reaction of the bodyт€™s immune to cancer many be another complication of the same. Cancer in most cases attacks the bodyт€™s healthy cells. As a result, signs, and symptoms such as seizures and difficulty in walking may be evident in some cancer patients.

Psychological and Physiological Side Effects

Any cancer, in general, has both physiological and mental side effects. For cancer, it is clear that a patient can exhibit both negative and positive reactions and late effects. Late psychological effects present themselves when primary treatment of a particular cancer is concluded (Kirby & Patel, 2013). They can include things like anxiety, stress, social isolation and depression. Posttraumatic growth (a situation where positive feedback or outcome in some patients is observed) is also a side effect. Some positive comments include raised self-esteem, improved people relationships and a sense of great peace. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) recommends that to those who survive cancer should at least consider distress screening on a periodical basis to ensure a healthy lifestyle.

Patients exhibit many physiological side effects during cancer treatment. Just to mention a few, they include anemia, weight loss, constipation, delirium, thrombocytopenia, edema among others. The way these effects are exhibited vary from patient to patient. Even though some patients might have the same cancer type, they mostly do respond very differently to same treatment. For every patient, it is recommended to ask for any side effects to the kind of therapy to be subjected to have prior knowledge on how to deal with them.

Methods to Lessen the Risk of Cancer

Cancer patients need much care to mitigate the effects and complications that are associated with the disease. As a result, it is worth noting that cancer patients ought to practice certain lifestyles in order to reduce the effects of the diseases. Cancer patients are strongly advised to eat healthy and balanced diets in their process of treatment and recovery. Cancer patients are advised to take plenty of fruits and vegetables in the course of reducing the physical and psychological effects associated with the same. For a fact, lots of vitamins would help in mitigating more damage that is associated with the cancer cells (т€œCancer prevention: 7 tips to reduce your riskт€, 2017)

Similarly, it is prudent to note that cancer patients need therapy and counseling in the process of mitigating the effects of the disease. Counseling and therapy sessions are fundamental as they help cancer patients cope up with the physical and mental torture brought upon as a result of cancer.

Then again, it is significant to note that cancer patients ought to attend physical training sessions to keep the body active. Attending physical therapy exercises allows for cancer patients to relax and stretch their muscles. The healthy body cells are to be kept active as they fight the cancer cells that invade the body.

However, much cancer patients are strongly advised to conduct the above to reduce the physical and psychological effects; there are activities and lifestyles they are warned not to partake. Cancer patients are strongly advised not to undertake activities such as taking alcohol and smoking tobacco. Both tobacco and alcohol weaken the healthy body cells thereby giving the cancer cells an opportunity to invade other parts of the body. Unhealthy lifestyles without physical activities is unadvisable for cancer patients.


In conclusion, it is significant to note that cancer patients need a lot of care in the process of treatment and healing. Cancer patients should ensure they take a healthy balanced diet to lessen the physical and psychological effects associated with cancer. One is strongly advised to seek medical attention when one feels he or she has signs and symptoms that match with those of cancer. Early treatment would allow for doctors to combat the growth and spread of the cancer cells in the body.


Hartmann, L. & Loprinzi, C. (2012). The Mayo Clinic breast cancer book (1st ed.). Intercourse, PA: Good Books.

Kirby, R. & Patel, M. (2013). Prostate cancer (1st ed.).

Lacroix, M. (2011). A concise history of breast cancer (1st ed.). New York: Nova Science Publishers.

Fleishman, S. (2012). Manual of cancer treatment recovery (1st ed.). New York: Demos Medical.

BIBLIOGRAPHY \l 1033 Cancer prevention: 7 tips to reduce your risk. (2017). Retrieved from Mayo Clinic:

Complications. (2017). Retrieved from Mayo Clinic: