Causes and Prevention of Esophageal Cancer

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On request of one of the Esophageal cancer fighters, I am dedicating this blogs to bring awareness on how one can prevent this cancer.

 In India, it is the 4th most common cause of cancer-related deaths. There has been a significant increase in the incidence of Esophageal cancer worldwide over the years.

This cancer fighter, I mentioned about in the beginning has requested me to share her story with all of you so people can be aware of the symptoms and go for early detection. A few years back, when I met her, she told me about her symptoms that included choking and regular indigestion. Even after my repeated reminders to get a test done, she was against getting the test done. One day while walking back from the market, she tells me that she was eating a banana. She took a bite, chewed and swallowed, and suddenly couldn’t breathe in or out. It felt as if someone had stuck a knife in her  chest. She waited slightly hunched over for the pain to ease and to be able to take a breath again. The next day she realized she had to get the test done. She was also
rapidly losing weight.

Fortunately, today she says she is leading a healthy happy life and is cancer-free. She loves travelling and she says if not for Covid-19 she would have been in Italy now.

So today I will tell you about the risk factors for this type of cancer. For some, it is the genes and nothing can be done about it. Regular exercise and a healthy diet needs to be maintained and can be protective factors for
most cancer types. Avoid the risk factors I will mention and increase the protective factors . This may lower the risk but it does not mean that it can completely prevent cancer.

Key points I would like to mention here are:

  • Esophageal cancer is a disease in which cancer cells form in the tissues of the esophagus.
  • Esophageal cancer occurs more often in men.
  • Men are about two times more likely than women to develop it.
  • The chance of developing Esophageal cancer increases with age.

Some factors may decrease the risk of esophagus cancer

  • Avoiding tobacco and alcohol use.
  • Chemoprevention with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Smoking, obesity and not getting enough exercise are some risk factors.

Talk to your doctor about how you might lower your risk of cancer.

Studies have shown that the risk is lower in people who do not use  tobacco  and alcohol.

Chemoprevention with nonsteroidal anti inflammatory drugs. Chemoprevention is the use of drugs and vitamins to reduce the risk of cancer. 

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