Esophageal Cancer refers to a set of malignant tumors that afflict the esophagus which is the vital organ that connects the throat with the stomach. When you have this kind of cancer issue, eating and drinking can become nightmares. You might begin to lose weight since you’ll be finding it very difficult to swallow food items. The cancer can be very dangerous to your system if left unchecked.
The Esophageal Cancer has been classified in two major subheadings namely, squamous cell cancer and Adenocarcinoma. The Squamous cell cancer emanates from the cells that are located at the upper part of the esophagus while Adenocarcinoma emanates from the glandular cells that are located at the link point between the stomach and the esophagus. The rule of the thumb here is that cancers seen in the upper region of the esophagus are known as squamous carcinoma while the ones seen at the lower part of the organ are known as Adenocarcinoma.
Several factors have been considered to be responsible for the occurrence of Esophageal Cancer. Let’s take a look at some of them.
Elderly persons who have crossed the age of 60 are usually liable to be having the Cancer of the esophagus due to the weakness of their internal organs.
The cancer is said to be more common in men than in women. This is obviously because of the eating and drinking lifestyle of most men.
Some people develop the cancer of the esophagus as a result of the presence of the disease in their family gene.
• Tobacco Smoking
People who smoke cigarette have a high risk of developing Esophageal Cancer as well lung cancer. 90% of people suffering from squamous cell cancer of the esophagus got that from tobacco smoking.
People who take all kinds of alcoholic drinks are likely to develop the cancer of the esophagus. This is usually the case with most men.
There are some diseases that also lead to Esophageal Cancer. For instance, people who suffer from Gastroesophageal Reflux disease (GERD) do have a high risk of developing the cancer of the esophagus. This is mainly because of the constant irritation of the mucosal lining in their system.
People who suffer from Human Papillomavirus (HPV) also have a high risk of developing the cancer of the esophagus. People who also have corrosive injury to the esophagus especially by swallowing acidic or alkaline substance do have the propensity of developing the cancer as well.
People who have anemia and esophageal webbing also known as Plummer-Vinson Syndrome have a high risk of developing the cancer of esophagus. The same scenario applies to people who have thermal injuries from their involvement in drinking hot beverages. Many people who have Coeliac disease also have the risk of developing the cancer as well.
If you’re overweight, there’s every possibility of you developing the Esophageal Cancer. In most cases, obesity increases the risk of the cancer a great deal.
• Medical History of Cancer
People who have medical histories of other kinds of cancer such as neck; lung and head cancers have high chances of developing the cancer of the esophagus.
Esophageal Cancer comes with several symptoms in the body of the victim. Among them include:
• Difficulty in Swallowing also known as Dysphagia
• Painful Swallowing also known as Odynophagia
• Weight loss
• Stomach Pains
• Severe heartburn
• Excessive Coughing
• Regurgitation of Foods
• Pneumonia risk
• Body Weakness
Apart from the above symptoms, the Cancer can easily spread to other internal organs of the body when it’s not treated on time. it can spread to the lungs, liver, and other organs.
Just live every other kind of cancer, the Esophageal Cancer can be treated when discovered on time. it may prove very difficult to handle if it’s not discovered on time as well. Hence, the very first step towards dealing with the cancer is to go for proper diagnosis. Once you begin to notice some of the symptoms mentioned above, you don’t need to wait any longer. You have to rush to your doctor for proper medical treatment.
During the diagnosis, several methods can be used to decode the presence of the cancer. Ultrasound and other kinds of x-rays can be carried out. it all depends on the decision of the medical professional handling the case.
After the diagnosis, several treatment methods may be used in dealing with the cancer. Surgery can be used to remove the tumors. The kind of surgery method normally used for Esophageal Cancer is known as Esophagectomy. It simply refers to the removal of the part of the esophagus that has been affected by the cancer.
Endoscopic Therapy is another treatment method that can be used. This is usually the best form of treatment when the cancer is still at its developing stages. Other forms of treatment used in dealing with the cancer include Laser therapy, Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy. The medical doctor decides on the right kind of treatment option to use based on the situation on ground.
After a successful treatment of the Esophageal Cancer, the patient is expected to be followed up for several months in order to forestall a repeat occurrence of the cancer in his or her system.
From the above excursus, it’s very clear that Esophageal Cancer can be very dangerous. A lot of individuals have had several kinds of ugly medical conditions because of the ailment. Many people have also lost their lives to the ailment. Well, the best kind of treatment for such ailment is prevention. There’s every need for you to check you’re eating and drinking habit. You can minimize the risk of the cancer by quitting smoking. You can also minimize the risk when you stop drinking excess alcoholic contents.
Finally, there’s also the need to be going for regular checkup at the hands of a good medical doctor. This helps you to checkmate any incidence of cancer in your system.