Cancer continues to become a worldwide health pandemic that affects both the young and old members of the society. The sickness is brought about by uncontrolled cell growth and change in the lifestyles of people. Increased use of tobacco, improper eating habits and reduced physical activity are risk factors that cause cancer. Other factors that cause cancer comprise of genetic factors and environmental exposure to industrial chemicals. Radiations also lead to cancer. An approach to cancer care may involve palliative control that continues to become an invaluable component of the treatment of the disease. Cancer is one of the leading causes of deaths in the US resulting in about 27% of mortality in the country (Hartley, 2008). The percentage accounts for 565,653 people who die in the US due to cancer related problems (Hartley, 2008). The World Health Organization defines palliative care as an intervention that is not dependent on curative approaches. Palliative care aims at improving the quality of life and reducing the pain experienced by cancer patients. Victims of cancer usually require special support from relatives and friends as part of their care. Mental, social and financial support is essential for the care of cancer patients. The cost involved in cancer treatment is usually high for many patients.
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The government must accord financial support to cancer patients. The current model of breast cancer intervention involves its treatment and consequent observation of signs of its recurrence. Government health experts continue to propose new dimensions of care for cancer patients that involve exercise and rehabilitation. The US government has been setting up clinics in the US with the intention of detecting early signs of breast cancer. Early diagnosis of cancer in a patient may lead to its eventual cure. Integrated care is also crucial in the treatment of cancer. It involves the input of many specialists. An eclectic dimension in cancer care provides the patient with an opportunity for specialized and efficient treatment. Various specialists usually hold a forum in which they present their solutions concerning a particular challenge involving care for cancer patients. The experts may provide different opinions, but they only uphold the best. Many specialists provide diverse options of care for patients leading to solutions to challenges involving the patients. Integrated care incorporates comprehensive treatment for cancer including social and emotional well being. This approach guides specialists on various alternatives available for their use in the care for cancer patients. According to the integrated dimension, cancer patients should be treated as equal partners in the decision- making process.
Cancer refers to the uncontrolled growth of cells in the human body. Cells usually grow, degenerate and fail to die as required. The cells form a massive tissue called a tumor. As the tumor grows, it interferes with surrounding tissues and organs. Cells grow and enter the lymphatic system. They spread through the bloodstream to various organs creating additional growths. The US health department has adopted a preventive approach towards people who may be free of the disease. According to the approach, patients ought to visit clinics for medical examination for possible detection and subsequent process of cure or preventive purposes. In the medical world, diagnosis of cancer does not necessarily lead to its cure. Physical examinations are essential before the process of cancer diagnosis. Doctors usually evaluate the medical history of the patient’s family prior to the actual process of diagnosis (McGonigle & Mastrian, 2012). In certain patients, cancer is genetically acquired. Many tests are required to determine the presence of cancer in a patient as certain diseases feature similar symptoms to those of cancer. Diagnostic testing is essential to the confirmation of the presence of cancerous cells in a given patient. It also assists in assessing the effectiveness of the adopted treatment. It helps in monitoring the development of the disease.
Cancer staging refers to the way a given cancer progresses. Stages in cancer development demonstrate the severity of the victim’s sickness. The stage of the disease enables the doctor to determine the treatment required at that particular level. Staging defines the criticality of the cancer based on the phase of the previous growth. The TNM staging system relates to the size of the primary tumor (T), whether cancer cells have spread to the surrounding lymph nodes (N), and if metastasis (M) has taken place. Metastasis refers to the spread of the tumor. The staging of cancer is usually determined by the information derived from physical examinations on the patients. Physicians may access other sources of information on cancer staging through imaging procedures, laboratory results from administered tests, surgical reports and pathology analyses. The staging of cancer leads to the determination of the phase of the illness in a given victim. Physicians also benefit from the process because they derive beneficial information from it. Cancer staging acts as a basis for evaluation of clinical trial results and provision of specialized care. Physicians administer treatment on patients based on the staging process.
Cancer recurrence is a major form of the disease. It occurs after a patient undergoes treatment of cancer. Many surviving cancer patients usually face the risk of cancer recurrence. Cancer patients should adopt preventive measures and undergo medical checkups and scans regularly to check for any recurrence. Patients who undergo bone marrow transplants due to malignant growth usually face the risk of acquiring pulmonary pneumonia caused by bacterial pneumonia. Cancer patients usually face the risk of cancer metastasis. Cancerous cells may spread from a given tumor and affect surrounding body organs leading to additional complications in the body. Cancer associated with the head may result in headaches and stroke for the victims. Cancer treatment involves radiotherapy whereby a patient undergoes radiation that kills malignant cells. This aspect may have devastating effects like loss of the taste capacity or tooth decay in the patients.
Cancer patients are usually subjected to various treatments depending on the stage of the disease. They go through painful experiences when subjected to surgery. Chemotherapy attempts to kill cells in the body meaning that hair roots may get destroyed leading to temporary loss of hair. Cancer victims may also experience fatigue in the course of treatment. The fatigue subsequently leads to low work productivity of the cancer victims. Health experts equate the anemia of cancer patients to radiotherapy treatment. Anemia leads to a reduction in the level of red blood cells, in a patient’s blood. Red blood cells are the elements that carry oxygen in the blood. Insufficient oxygen in the body may lead to weaknesses in the patient.
Treatments involving cancer may result in physical and psychological effects. A physician may administer medication that can affect the normal functioning of a patient’s body. The specialist must provide medication that reduces a patient’s discomfort after treatment. Cancer patients usually require adequate rest or sleep after treatment because it helps them to recover from their illnesses. The patients should avoid activities that may make them feel fatigued. Fatigue may occur due to the rigorous treatment that cancer patients undergo. Certain cancer victims experience complications in their urinary organs leading to the uncontrolled release of urine from their urine bladders. This aspect may be psychologically disturbing to them. Cancer patients should wear pads to absorb unexpected urine release from their urine bladders. They should not engage in consumption of alcohol. A cancer patient should eat a balanced diet.
Hartley, C.L. (2008). Nursing in Today’s World: Trends, Issues, & Management. London, UK: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
McGonigle, D., & Mastrian, K. G. (2012). Nursing Informatics and the Foundation of Knowledge (6th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.