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Cancer is a serious condition, which affects many people both in the US and outside. The primary danger of the disease is lack of obvious symptoms that would allow to diagnose and treat it in the early stages. This component together with various factors that cause cancer and enable the growth of tumors provide different challenges for medical professionals and researchers. This paper aims to synthesize the current knowledge regarding inflammation as the factor that impacts the development of cancer.
Cancer, its causes, and treatment methods have been studied for decades because the disease results in high mortality rates in the US. According to Huether and McCance (2017), the condition is signified by cell division, that differs from the typical one. Additionally, such cells can invade other tissues in one’s body, which is referred to as metastasis. While there are several causes to this abnormality, this paper will focus on inflammation and its implications.
Chronic inflammation is believed to be a significant factor that contributes to the development of cancer. Moreover, Shalapour and Karin (2015) state that physicians have recognized this factor as a component affecting the development of diseases since the beginning stages of professional medicine. Firstly, it is necessary to understand the meaning of the term and the alterations that occur in one’s body due to inflammation. Shalapour and Karin (2015) state that it is a biological mechanism affected by cell damage. For instance, cell death or infection can result in inflammation.
A person’s body aims to mitigate this damage by neutralizing the stimuli and enabling the healing process. Overall, it is a normal process that occurs in every person’s body (“Chronic inflammation,” 2015). However, in some cases, the inflammatory process is neither facilitated due to injury, nor it ends after the healing has occurred. This results in the damage of one’s DNA that in some cases leads to the progression of abnormal cell division.
Several factors enable the development of cancer due to inflammation. According to Shalapour and Karin (2015), “chronic inflammation promotes tumor development, progression, and metastatic dissemination, as well as treatment resistance” (p. 3347). Therefore, while this factor does not cause the disease directly, it significantly affects the severity of the condition. An example of tumors caused by inflammation is colon cancer. The National Cancer Institute states that chronic bowel inflammation may lead to the development of this condition (“Chronic inflammation,” 2015). This information implies that individuals that have inflammation should be monitored by their healthcare providers to ensure that abnormal cell division is diagnosed early.
The understanding of this factor provides an opportunity to develop recommendations that would help individuals prevent the development of cancer. For instance, Huether and McCance (2017) state that regular physical activity can reduce inflammation, therefore, mitigating this risk factor especially for colon or breast cancer. The National Cancer Institute states that this factor highlights the importance of researching anti-inflammatory medication, such as aspirin as a prospective approach to treating the condition (“Chronic inflammation,” 2015). However, currently, no clear consensus exists on the inflammation and treatment of tumors requiring more studies that would examine the matter.
Overall, inflammation is a normal biological process of a human body that aims to heal damaged cells. In some cases, it occurs without an apparent reason or for extended periods leading to DNA damage. This, in its turn, affects the cell division, resulting in the growth of tumors. One example is chronic bowel diseases that may cause colon cancer. Understanding this component provides insight into future research and treatment options.
Chronic inflammation. (2015). Web.
Huether, S. E., & McCance, K. L. (2017) Understanding pathophysiology (6th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.
Shalapour, S., & Karin, M. (2015). Immunity, inflammation, and cancer: An eternal fight between good and evil. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 125(9), 3347–3355. Web.