Your facial appearance is not the sole personality contributor. What holds you straight is your body’s calcium frame is your skeletal system. Your mobility endures till your bones are healthy. Unfortunately, some ignore their bones need leading to bone sarcomas and tumours formation, a condition of bone cancer, a rare but it doesn’t spare. Cancer is a merciless killer. What is Bone cancer? Bone cancers are called sarcomas. Tumours/Sarcomas are cancers that develop from bone, cartilage, muscles, fibrous tissue, fatty tissue, or nerve tissue. Fibrous Tissue, Cartilage and Calcium forms bone, and cancer-cells target these parts. Cancer cells are merciless and spread quickly reach the bones too causing bone cancer. Osteosarcoma, Chondrosarcoma, Ewing’s tumour and Chordomaare the four types of bone cancer. Osteosarcoma's most common is tumour form, the other is on cartilage, third develops inside the bone, and fourth affects the skull’s base and the spine. But bone cancer is not immortal; it can be treated with Ayurvedic and natural ways. During the initial stage, bone pain may not be constant and may arise at night. As cancer grows, bone pain is present at all times and can worsen with activity. Pain also comes along with the conventional treatment of bone cancer.
Acharya Manish (Founder Suddhi Ayurveda) shares some Ayurvedic herbs and medicines which can help in the management of bone cancer pain are:
- Turmeric and Curcumin (Promoter of healthy bone cells growth): Both turmeric and curcumin have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin has anti-cancer properties. Consumption of this not only gives relief in pain but also destroys cancer. Both herbal and turmeric are so useful that they are capable of killing cancer-causing cells. Curcumin is best during post-operative treatments with osteosarcoma. Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a well-known spice of India and used as medicine in Ayurveda. Curcumin's antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties in particular. A study by the New York-based Cancer Research Center concluded that turmeric is more accurate than aspirin in preventing inflammation.
- Garlic and Ginger: (Allium sativum) is a medicinal plant and a quite pungent spice when raw. Garlic has natural anti-cancer properties in cell culture. The ginger extract helps reduce pain and inflammation. It reduces the number of elements of prostaglandins and calms down the molecules that cause pain. Apart from relieving pain, ginger is also useful in reducing nausea and discomfort. You can consume ginger both in fresh or dried form. Ginger's Ayurvedic medicines are available in the form of oil or extracts.
- Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera): There is some evidence to suggest that the herb can have neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory effects. Inflammation occurred due to many health conditions, and reducing inflammation can protect the body against various diseases. It helps in preventing the growth of new cancer cells in several ways.
- Chitrak: Plumbago zeylanica consists of bioactive compounds which possess anti-cancer activity against various cancer cells. Chitrak is considered as rasyan that is immunomodulatory and works on the cellular level, which helps prevent cancerous pain in the bone. It also supports and protect the body from free radicals and strengthening the immune system.
- Water: The chemotherapy process causes a shortage of water in your body, which increases the need to drink water regularly. It prevents the buildup of toxic waste in your kidneys and helps to flush out the toxins from your bloodstream. It helps reduce fatigue. Staying hydrated also helps in dealing with such gastro problems.
- Papain: This is the extract of papaya fruit which forms the skin of unripe papaya. Studies have shown that Papain destroys tumour cells. Papen herbs have been proven to reduce the effects of cancer radiation. Medicines made from papain are very useful in getting rid of cancer.
- Amla: Emblica Officinalis is useful in the treatment and prevention of cancer. Many preclinical studies have shown that amla possesses various properties which are helpful in cancers. It also helps in augmenting immunity and delaying recurrence.
Complementary medicine and alternative treatment for bone cancer pain
"Metastasis to the bone is common and resultant pain debilitating. Multiple myeloma and bone metastasis from carcinoma breast, prostate and lungs account for more than 80% of bone metastasis, while cancer of the kidneys and thyroid account for the remainder. Approximately 60–84% of patients with advanced cancer are estimated to experience varying degrees of bone pain that negatively impact daily living activities, mobility, independence, and the individual's confidence. The family is affected by the pain and physical, emotional and psychological decline they see. All management options are aimed at improving the quality of life, betterment in functionality and Independence. Of the pharmacological and non-pharmacological measures initiated to manage bone pain, non-pharmacological methods empower the patient and family to feel they have a significant role in managing the pain. Management of metastatic bone pain should be individualised as the location, and the severity of pain can vary in the presentation" says Dr Raghavendra Ramanjulu, Lead Consultant – Palliative Medicine Rehabilitation, Aster CMI Hospital.
CAM approach, is a field of therapy that is practised hand in hand with conventional management methods. However, it may not play a direct role in disease modification or improving severe bone pain which is only to be managed with primary oncology interdisciplinary management. CAM has a significant role in addressing other symptoms such as anxiety, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, difficulty sleeping, and stress, which could indirectly influence the pain control and impact the quality of life.
- Physiotherapy, TENS – understanding exercise, ergonomics and supporting devices in helping to promote functionality. Acupuncture, Massage, reflexology, Acupressure are some examples of peripheral therapies.
- Mind-Body medicine - yoga as a medium using breathing techniques, Relaxation and meditation to improve the fluidity of movement and re-harness the inner energy. It is used to address fatigue, anxiety, mood, stress, and patient quality of life. The use of specific asanas should be avoided.
- Aromatherapy - essential oils/ aromas are used for massage oil, inhalational or bath salts.
- Cognitive behavioural therapy – a psychological treatment, in a three-step process of education of pain, training coping mechanisms for the learned skill's pain and practice.
- Imagery or hypnosis Cognitive behavioural therapy – trained therapists, use positive visualisations/ hypnosis to divert the mind from pain and enhance relaxation.
Dr Raghavendra Ramanjulu states that "although CAM is a therapy option in the interdisciplinary approach to manage bone pain, their effectiveness is still being researched, and hence, have to be accessed under supervision of a trained professional and primary doctor made aware of the use of these modalities of treatment".
"Modernization of the 21st century has helped us make our lives more comfortable, but excess use of technology has driven us to unhealthy lifestyles due to which most of us are suffering from one or the other disease. Cancer is one of them, and when we talk about bone cancer, it is excruciating for patients emotionally and physically. The diagnosis of cancer of a dear and near person shatters the relatives and patients himself with anxiety and fear as the disease is considered incurable, and stressful. Ancient Ayurveda can help patients for the better quality of life by improving their physical and mental health through various medicines, herbs and panchakarma. Panchkarma plays a significant role in giving strength to the body by expelling toxic vitiated doshas out of the body" says Dr Pooja Kohli, VP - Ayurveda Growth, NirogStreet.
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