Cancer is just a 'Word' and not a 'Sentence'. Usually the Cancer diagnosis comes with lot of stress, anxiety, fear, uncertainty and trepidations related to treatment and side effects .There is a common belief that Cancer is usually a fatal condition with no chance of recovery. Contrary to such misconception, majority of the cancers are curable with excellent long term survival if diagnosed in early stage. To determine the odds of survival for each Cancer, doctors generally refer to the 5-year survival rate. This is the percentage of people who have been cancer-free 5 years after diagnosis, which normally correlates with high probability of cure. On the occasion of world cancer day, Dr. Nikhil S Ghadyalpatil, Senior Consultant Medical Oncologist & Hemato-Oncologist at Yashoda Hospitals Hyderabad lists out cancers that can be cured.
Below are the 7 most curable cancers with strong 5-year survival rates.
Breast Cancer is the commonest cancer in India amongst women. This symptoms of breast cancer presents with a lump in the breast or changes in the nipple. Breast cancer has cure rates going as high as 95% and above in early stage including precancerous conditions. Modern medicine has made great strides against Breast cancer.With the help of investigations like Mammography Doctors today can diagnose Breast cancer at an early stage .Advances in treatments like newer Chemotherapies and targeted theraies as well as Radiation and Surgical techniques in conjunction with research have made cure more likely in Breast Cancer.
Doctors can usually cure testicular cancer during its early stages or when the tumour hasn't spread to other body parts. Typically, treatment involves removal of the involved testis. Surgery in combination with radiation or chemotherapy is effective in eliminating cancer cells. A recent article in the Journal of Clinical Oncology considers the advances in treatment of testicular cancer as one of the greatest achievements in medicine.
In some cases, advanced Testicular cancer patients also achieve complete cure because of better disease biology. Mr. Lance Armstrong, seven times “Tour De France” champion is one such noted example, who fought advanced stage Testicular Cancer and emerged not only victorions but also a cured patient.
Prostate cancer usually grows at a very slow pace and a routine blood test (Serum PSA level) starting at the age of 50 years can pick up the disease at much earlier stage, thereby paving way for more likely cure and long term survival. Prostate cancer symptoms present with urinary disturbances like frequency of urination and hesitancy of urination. Although relapse of Prostate cancer happens from time to time, in general these patients have long term survival. Better treatment modalities like Robotic surgery, Hormonal therapy and advanced radiation techniques like Image Guided Radiotherapy (IGRT) and Proton therapy have made this possible.
Cervical cancer is one of the most treatable cancers because of the effective methods available to detect the cancer at early stage. A quick PAP test detects the presence of abnormal cells on the cervix before these cells even turn cancerous. However, even if cancer cells appear on the cervix, they grow at a very slow rate. If these cells are diagnosed at a precancerous stage, they can be treated before they turn cancerous and spread. Early stage cervical cancer can be effectively treated with surgical or concurrent chemoradiation techniques. These patients have excellent long term survival.
Thyroid cancer is a cancer of thyroid gland — a butterfly shaped gland located in front part of neck. Papillary cancer, the most common type of thyroid cancer, grows usually slowly. This type has high cure probability with surgical treatment alone or with post operate Radioactive Iodine therapy.
Hodgkin’s Lymphoma is a highly curable cancer with cure rates upto 90% and above with exceedingly great long term survival. Usual treatment involves Chemotherapy and Radiation. Even people diagnosed at later stages will still have a good chance at recovery as well as cure.
Paediatric Oncology can be considered as one of the real success stories in Cancer cure. With great cure rates, majority of the paediatric cancer patients are long term survivors . Childhood Leukaemia(AcuteLymphoblastic Leukaemia and Acute Promyelocytic Leukaemia) , Kidney tumors , Liver tumours, Lymphomas and various other organ malignancies can be cured with multimodality approach involving surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
In conclusion, amongst all health ailments, Cancer is also one such curable conditions. Current advances in the management as well as ongoing research has improved cure rates substantially amongst Cancer patients.
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