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Is Stage 4 Cancer Curable?

Is Stage 4 Cancer Curable?

Stage 4 cancer, or metastasis cancer, is the most advanced cancer stage. Cancer cells metastasize to other body parts away from the original tumour site in this stage. This stage may be detected years after the initial cancer diagnosis and after primary cancer has been treated or removed. The prognosis of stage 4 cancer is not always good. However, many people can live for years after diagnosis. It is the most advanced stage; it needs the most aggressive treatment. Stage 4 cancer can sometimes be terminal cancer. Some experts may refer to this stage as an end-stage of cancer. If a doctor confirms that the cancer is terminal, this usually means that the cancer is at the advanced stage, and the treatment options focus on controlling rather than curing cancer.  Even though cancer is metastasized to the other part of the body in stage 4 cancer, it is still described by its original location. For example, if breast cancer cells reach the brain, it is still considered breast cancer, not brain cancer. Many stage 4 cancers have various subcategories, such as stage 4A or stage 4B, often determined by how cancer has metastasized to other body parts. Likewise, stage 4 cancers are often mentioned as metastatic adenocarcinomas. This article will define stage 4 cancer and how it is diagnosed and treated. It will help you learn about treatment and possible stage 4 cancer outcomes.Also Read: Life Expectancy in Last Stage Cancer Survival rates for common cancers in stage IV Survival rates mean the likelihood of living for a certain period, such as five years after a doctor diagnoses cancer. If the doctor says that the five-year survival rate for people with breast cancer spread to distant body areas is 28%, it reflects that 28% of people survive for this period. Survival rates may vary based on the type of cancer. The five-year survival rate for mesothelioma spread to other body parts is 7%. This rate is 3% for distant pancreatic cancer.  However, it is worth noting that these rates are obtained from past data; they may not reflect the most recent advances in treatment. Also, a wide range of factors influences each person's life expectancy. One aspect of the prognosis for advanced cancer is called relative survival rate. This refers to the percentage of people with a particular diagnosis likely to live a specific amount of time. The rates for advanced cancers are based on statistics published in the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program database. SEER does not use TNM to classify cancers. Instead, it uses three stages—localized, regional, and distant—with "distant" generally meaning the same thing as stage 4. It refers to cancer that has spread beyond the original site or nearby tissue or lymph nodes. For most types of cancer, SEER uses five-year survival rates. Cancer's spread will often begin in the same region where the original cells were found. For example, breast cancer may spread to lymph nodes under the arm. Common sites of cancer metastasis include: Lung cancer: This is located in adrenal glands, bones, brain, liver, and the other lung. Breast cancer: It is found in bones, the brain, the liver, and the lungs. Prostate cancer: It is located in the adrenal glands, bone, liver, and lungs. Colorectal cancer is found in the liver, lungs, and peritoneum (lining of the abdomen). Melanoma: It is located in bones, the brain, liver, lungs, skin, and muscles. Treatment for stage 4 cancer Treatment for stage IV cancer depends on the tumour's location and the organs involved. It becomes difficult to treat if the cancer cells spread from the site where it was first diagnosed. Patients diagnosed with stage 4 or metastatic cancer may not survive without treatment. Options to treat stage 4 cancer may involve chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormone therapy, surgery, immunotherapy, targeted therapy or combining these modalities. The purpose of treatment is to prolong survival and improve quality of life. An oncologist will treat cancer depending on its type, where it has spread, and other factors. Also Read: Is Ovarian Cancer Curable? Chemotherapy Chemotherapy is given to a cancer patient to kill a small number of cancer cells. It is usually less effective in eradicating a larger number of tumour cells present in widespread metastases. If cancer has spread to only a few small areas, surgeons may be able to remove it to prolong the patient’s survival. In most cases, treatment of stage IV cancer is aimed at prolonging patients’ survival and improving their quality of life.  Radiation Therapy Radiation therapy is given at high doses to kill cancer cells or slow their growth by damaging the DNA of the cells. When the DNA of a cancer cell is damaged beyond repair, it stops dividing and dies. Dead, damaged cells are broken down and rejected by the body. Radiation therapy does not kill cancer cells directly. After the DNA is damaged, treatment takes days or weeks, leading to cancer cells' death. Cancer cells continue to die for weeks or months after radiation therapy is over. Radiation therapy is used to treat cancer and ease cancer symptoms. When used to treat cancer, radiation therapy can cure, prevent it from returning, or stop or slow its growth.  Are you looking for a way to enjoy online casino games without breaking the bank? Look no further than minimum deposit online casinos in Canada! With the option to deposit as little as 1 dollar, these casinos offer a low-risk way to experience the thrill of gambling. But don't let the low deposit amount fool you - these casinos still offer a wide variety of games and exciting bonuses. From popular slot machines to classic table games, there is something for everyone. And with the ability to deposit and withdraw funds quickly and securely, you can focus on enjoying the games without worrying about the logistics. So why wait? Give a casino 1 dollar deposit in Canada a try today and see for yourself why they are quickly becoming a popular choice for casual gamblers and experienced players alike. Who knows, you may even strike it lucky and win big! Hormone Therapy Hormone therapy is a type of cancer treatment. It slows or stops the growth of a tumour that uses hormones to grow. This therapy is also called hormonal therapy, hormone treatment, or endocrine therapy. Hormone therapy reduces the chance of cancer cells returning. This therapy also stops or slows cancer growth. It eases cancer symptoms. Hormone therapy also reduces or prevents symptoms in men with prostate cancer who cannot have surgery or radiation therapy. Surgery Surgery generally is not used to treat stage 4 cancer, as cancer cells spread in different body parts in this stage. However, if the cancer cells are scattered in a small area, and the number of cancer cells is less, they can be removed with surgery. But usually, they can be removed along with the primary tumour. Surgery may relieve symptoms and help prevent cancer from spreading even more. Targeted Therapy Targeted therapy is a cancer treatment that targets proteins that control cancer cells' growth, division, and spread. It is the foundation of precision medicine. As researchers learn more about the DNA changes and proteins that drive cancer, they can better design treatments that target these proteins. Most targeted therapies are either small-molecule drugs or monoclonal antibodies. Small-molecule drugs are small enough to enter cells quickly and are used for targets inside cells. Most types of targeted therapy help treat cancer by interfering with specific proteins that help tumours grow and spread throughout the body. Immunotherapy This treatment targets drugs that use our immune system, including blood proteins, namely antibodies, to attack cancer cells. Immunotherapy drugs are used for different types of cancer, including bladder, breast, colon and rectum, kidney, liver, lung, and blood (leukaemia, lymphoma, and multiple myeloma) prognosis. Also Read: Leukaemia is Perfectly Curable at The Early Stage Conclusion Cancer research and technology have advanced a lot in the last two decades. It has shown that there is hope for the future. Each year, new data emerges from a scope of technology that is ever-expanding, helping to provide patients with a new lease on life. However, like any further information, it is essential to evaluate it judiciously and be realistic about what is possible. It is also significant to remember that there is still life after a cancer diagnosis, even stage IV. Online casinos in Australia become increasingly popular and provide the perfect opportunity for Australians to enjoy the thrills of casino games from anywhere with an internet connection. Nowadays, many online casinos offer no wagering bonuses that allow customers to keep their winnings without having to wager a certain amount of money first. This is a great advantage to players as it gives them more control over their gameplay and more options when it comes to withdrawing their winnings. Players can find these types of bonuses on https://aucasinoslist.com/bonuses/no-wagering-bonus/. Here, they will have the chance to freely browse through Aussie online casinos and check out which ones have no-wager bonuses available. No wagering bonuses are becoming a desirable option for Aussie players as they don't fall under the country's gambling laws and restrictions, so be sure to take a look if you're looking for an online casino conducting business in Australia! ...

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Kartikeya & Aditi Mediratta (Blood Cancer): He Has Been His Own Biggest Advocate

Kartikeya & Aditi Mediratta (Blood Cancer): He Has Been His Own Biggest Advocate

Early Symptoms, Misdiagnosis and the final revelation: Around April 2017, I and my husband were working in different cities and he was staying in Bangalore alone. He regularly practiced Yoga and was physically fit, but suddenly started suffering from fever, night sweats and breathing difficulties. When it didnt get better for a couple of weeks, we saw a nearby doctor. Initially misdiagnosed as tuberculosis, he began the treatment in Bengaluru. However, he didnt get better and a senior pulmonologist figured out that something is wrong. After a series of tests and a surgical biopsy, we came to know that he was suffering from T Cell Lymphoblastic Lymphoma, a rare form of aggressive Blood Cancer. Gearing up for the fight: As soon as the news spread, most of our relatives back in Gurgaon and New Delhi started offering help. We felt very lost due to lack of enough information. Blood Cancer was not something we knew or understood. We never thought it could happen to us. It took us some time to realise the gravity of the situation. All at the same time, there was too much information and still a sense of not knowing what is the right thing to do-choosing treatment protocols, managing finances, making decisions about our jobs, everything seemed complex. Lack of Information: Due to lack of a support system in Bangalore, we took him back to Gurgaon and started treatment there, hoping for a better environment. His extended family has several doctors who helped navigate the first few weeks. He is a person who works with a lot of information and likes to face the truth. Unfortunately, the general approach of doctors and hospitals can be to hide information thinking it will overwhelm the patient and their families. We kept circling around the oncology and nursing staff to find basic things such as length of our treatment protocol. Our hospital in Gurgaon was extremely busy and crowded and it was hard to get the care and attention Kartikeya needed. The Tirade against Cancer: Kartikeya turned out to be his own biggest advocate. While he had all the help he needed from family and friends, he chose to ask difficult questions from his doctors to that they could help him make better choices for his treatment and survival. Keeping in the dark about the treatment protocol is not a great way to deal with a cancer patient. Ultimately, we spent 3 months getting treatment in Gurgaon and Kartikeya took the bold decision that he wanted to find a hospital and oncologists who would listen and care more. He wanted to move back to Bangalore, start going to work again and resume normalcy in life as far as possible, even with two years of intensive treatment still remaining. A God-sent Angel: This is when we understood the importance of doing proper research and consulting and finding a trustworthy doctor and hospital system. We showed Kartikeyas reports to Dr.Hari Menon who had recently started working at Cytecare Hospital in Bangalore. He has been a god-sent angel along with all the doctors and staff at Cytecare. When we met him, we immediately knew getting treated by him would make Kartikeya feel infinitely better. With a rich background of over two decades and a very caring and experienced nursing and palliative care team, we realized how proper care is meted out to Blood Cancer patients. The Road to Recovery: My husband started feeling better! Most of his tumours started dissolving. His blood counts used to fluctuate due to impact of chemo, but Dr Menon gave him the freedom to go to work whenever he could. His philosophy is to allow patients to deal with Blood Cancer similar to any other disease. Stopping life is no way to live. With the amount of care, respect and love Kartikeya got from his new treatment team, he felt much stronger emotionally and this also improved his physical recovery. My mom in law took a year long sabbatical to care for Kartikeya. We were both able to join work and were lucky enough to have support at our workplaces too. That had an invaluable impact on the overall situation. The medical treatment got over by the middle of 2019. Parting Message: The Patient and care giver have to be the biggest advocate. Arm yourself with as much information as possible and ask the right questions. Control the urge to Google prognosis data and side-effects of drugs. Irrespective of our health conditions, it is imperative that we educated ourselves about health insurance. I was so ignorant that I hadnt even added him as a nominee in my corporate insurance. Most of us underplay our medical problems and are caught unaware when something big like Blood Cancer happens. Even doctors try to suppress issues. Our country lacks the infrastructure and support system for cancer patients and their families. But with people like Dimple and initiatives like ZenOnco.io, we know that the future will be in better hands.
Akash Srivastava: A Caregiver Beyond Words

Akash Srivastava: A Caregiver Beyond Words

Akash Srivastava, a caregiver, is an altruist beyond words. He goes to the extent of taking care of poor cancer patients from his salary. On average, he spends a part of his salary for cancer patients who cannot afford to purchase medicines, groceries or essential commodities. In a recent interview with ZenOnco.io, Indias first AI backed Integrated Oncology group, he says, "My grandmother had cancer. I drew inspiration from my her episode and decided to do my bit for the society. I work with a lot of poor cancer patients. Right from getting them admitted to buying medicines for them, I spend a part of my salary for such needy people and their families every month." ZenOnco.io: What inspires you to engage in such altruistic activities? That too, consistently? Akash: My father is a great source of inspiration. He pitches a part of his monthly pension for the genuine and Nobel cause. Along with him, the happiness and the innocent smiles on the faces of cancer patients is what inspires me further. Knowing that I am able to bring at least a small change in the lives of so many people are almost addictive. I attend meetings for them and motivate them at least twice a week. ZenOnco.io: Do you have any advice for the patients? Akash: Life is not that complicated. It is easy to get demotivated and accede defeat. Even while going through treatment, they feel that they wont survive. The same sentiment is reflected across their families. Even if it is not for financial help, we visit them to provide emotional and moral support. There are times when we have to shell out our entire salary. We wish Mr. Akash, his noble father and other angel-like caregivers all the best for their future endeavors.
Aditya Putatunda(Sarcoma): I Keep Him Alive In Me

Aditya Putatunda(Sarcoma): I Keep Him Alive In Me

It was the year 2014 during Diwali when we got to know that Dad has cancer. All of us were shocked to hear the news. I was located in Delhi and my sister in Bangalore and were not with our Dad. The first symptom was when Dad started having Pain in his thighs. There was a lump in his prostate, and we did not think much of it and for the initial six months, he ignored it as there was no Pain. This generally is the case with people who have no idea about cancer. After the initial four-five months, Dad started having pain, and he decided to go to the doctor. My parents were staying in Ranchi at that time. So, they went to a local doctor who advised to get a Biopsy done to be clear as to what the lump was. My sister asked my parents to come over to Bengaluru for the check-up as the facilities are good there. So, our parents went there and Dad got his test and check up done at Manipal Hospital. That is when he was diagnosed with cancer. The first thought that comes to your mind when you hear the word cancer is how much time, do you have. Dad was a very healthy man. Having been from a sales background in the Pharma industry, we have seen Dad travel a lot and lead a very active life. We seldom saw him fall sick, and so it was a shock when he was diagnosed with cancer. As compared to Dad, our mother has been the one whom we have been more concerned about health-wise as she is diabetic and has had health issues off and on. I was having my final exams and wanted to go to Bengaluru and be with them. But my father supported me and told me to focus on my studies and not miss my exams. All he told me was to give the exams properly and get my degree and travel down post the exams as the cancer was a situation that was not going to go away soon. We all decided to be practical and not handle the situation emotionally. Post my exams I travelled down to Bengaluru to be with him. The treatment being given was for sarcoma, which is a soft tissue cancer. Dr. Zaveri, who is one of the best doctors in Manipal Hospital, carried out the Surgery on his external where the cancer was found and this was followed by radiation. It all went well and Dad was relieved. Chemotherapy was also done but the dose was less than in this type of cancer it is not very effective. We all kept a very positive mind during this time as even the doctors were helping us by being optimistic and telling us not to worry. During the Surgery and radiation, there was a risk of paralysis to the leg as the infected tissue was very close to a nerve and the doctors had to carve out the tissue cautiously without touching the nerve. We all prayed for the Surgery to go well. Post the Surgery Dad could not feel any sensation under his feet when he walked, so we realized that this was a side effect of the surgery, and we were happy as it was relatively a minimal issue in comparison. The doctor asked him to keep coming for check-ups as a chance of relapse is always there. These check-ups are scary for every family with a cancer patient. So, every three months it was like a dagger on the head as it would be uncertain of what will happen. By 2015 he had recovered well and was doing fine but then by the end of the year it relapsed. This time it happened in a part of the body where Surgery was not possible. We first went to Manipal and then to AIIMS, New Delhi. But between this, my sister shared a blog with me about Yeshi Dhinden, who is the private doctor of the Dalai Lama and lives in a Dharamshala in McLeod Ganj. He uses some Tibetan Medicine to treat such diseases. So my sister wanted me to go and find out about this as she felt maybe Dad would get cured and would not have to go through so much Pain again. The medicines were available only based on booking done earlier. They did not have any online facility. On the date of the booking, one has to go with a sample. The office would open at 10 in the morning, but I was surprised to see that at 3 in the morning the place was crowded with people rushing to get the medicine. I was standing in the queue and talking around, Most of them were relatives of cancer patients. The crowd included people from all walks of life and I heard many stories about recoveries because of this medicine. I got optimistic about it and managed to get a booking for two weeks later. Dad was not convinced about it as he was from a pharma background and had handled medicines. But he came with us for the appointment after we convinced him. The doctor, Yeshi Dhonden, examined him and communication was a difficulty as there was a language barrier, but we managed it somehow. He gave some pills like Hajmola candies which were distributed from a medicine counter. This doctor is very popular there, and I am not sure if he is still around there. Even if he is, we would not be going there. The chamber was well organized and only forty patients were seen a day. They could courier the medicines to you after your first visit as going there every time was not possible. Dad started taking the medicines. Initially, he had a Pain in his thighs, but then he got some relief after having the medicines. We parallelly continued with the other treatment too. We conducted an Ultrasound which showed the growth reducing in size which we felt was a miracle. I again took a urine sample of Dads urine to the Dharamshala, and they did some tests and gave more medicines. Eventually, at AIIMS we got to know that the lumps were placed too internally and Surgery was ruled out. That left us shocked as that meant that Dad had to live with it. We met Dr., Rastogi, and he started giving Chemo and dads health started deteriorating. Dad stopped the Tibetan medicines too even though I went and got them. There was no difference in the size of the tumor. As a last resort, the doctor advised giving Spazopanic but dads age was a factor as this medicine is a targeted medicine which cures a particular part only. To help us be positive, the doctor showed us many positive cases where people survived with this medicine. I then had a very difficult discussion with Dad after this where I told him that this is our final shot at curing your cancer but it could go either way. Dad just said that he had suffered enough and that he wanted to take this chance and that if anything happened then he was only responsible for it. I never discussed this conversation with my mother or anyone even after a year after Dads death. I was perplexed but Dad was suffering and no one likes to see their loved ones in Pain. Dad was taking Morphine which was not helping him much because he would remain awake for days in Pain. I still requested Dad to think once more about the pros and cons as I did not want to lose him. Dad said that this was our only hope and even if it did not, he wanted us to know that what he was living was not good either. As he had an idea of medicines and how they work, he knew what he was saying. Dad dealt with the situation in the best way as he had seen many deaths in his life and was mentally strong. I consulted the doctor again, and he said that this is the last chance as eventually, even this would go away. With this medicine, dad had a chance of getting a new lease at life and if it did not work also the kind of life Dad was having was not worth it because the quality of life also matters and Dad was suffering badly. I could not be selfish and make Dad live just for it. So, we decided to go for it and Dad remained positive and gave me courage whereas it was I who should have given it to him. But as fate would have it, the medicine did not help. He took it for a month and his health deteriorated further. During the consumption of this medicine, one needs to keep an eye on the heart function. On the 23rd of September 2016 an emergency happened. On that morning my Dad was looking all swollen up and I took a picture of him and sent it to the doctor. The doctor told us to stop that medicine and take him immediately to the hospital to get tested. While getting the test done the doctor was also present, and he said that only 22% of your Dads heart was working and asked to admit him immediately. Luckily, my friend was with me and I asked him to drive the car to the hospital. Dad understood what was happening and asked me to pick up mom. We called his doctor up, and he asked us to come soon as he would help to get him admitted immediately on reaching. We reached there and thanks to the people there, Dad got admitted. My sister also came down from Bengaluru. A Cardio specialist came down and consulted dads oncologist and then said that seeing everything, there was nothing they could do except giving all the support that they could medically in the form of ventilators and other support to keep him alive, My sister did not want to believe it and was fighting and wanted to take him out of the hospital and shift him. I explained it to her and even the doctor asked us to understand the reality of the situation and told us that we could only take him out after signing a paper stating that we were doing so on our responsibility. If anything happens to him then they would not be responsible. We discussed and decided to stay. I stayed with my dad all the time. On Saturday night I was with him, and dad had started talking gibberish and was living in the past. He would ask me if I had come back from school and would tell me not to lose my pens which I used to when I was young. On the morning of the 25th of September 2016 at around 10 a.m. he passed away after having a seizure. I was ready for it as I already had a discussion with the doctor and I knew what was going to happen. I am still in touch with people having similar cases. This experience changed me completely as I used to take life very casually. But as Dad had wanted me to live more responsible, I learned to be so. What I learned from this was that no matter even if your loved ones are not around you physically, they are with you in your conversations, your surroundings and in everything you do. I was 25 years old when I lost him and I missed having him around as that was the age when my life was evolving. So, even now I keep him alive in me by thinking how Dad would handle any situation that I face and live like he wanted me to. Dad would always say that in life there are two kinds of problems; one which you could brainstorm about, find a solution and solve and the other which cannot be solved. So, solve the problem that you can and forget the other. He maintained the same attitude towards his cancer too. He told me not to regret as we did the best we could and not live on contemplation. It is important to do things and not think about what is right or wrong. He asked me to take care of mom as he would not be around, and I am proud of being able to live up to his words. I still go to support meetings and I try to help as much as possible with my busy professional schedule. Many people come from far-flung places and I speak with them too. I am delighted with the way Love Heals Cancer is working towards helping people suffering or associated with cancer and also spoke to Dimple and expressed my appreciation.
Aman (Gallbladder Cancer): Choose Hope Every Time

Aman (Gallbladder Cancer): Choose Hope Every Time

How gallbladder cancer began My caregiver experience started back in 2014, when my mother fell ill. She started getting tired and experienced unexplained weight loss. We thought of getting it checked to be safe since my mother had also suffered a similar issue with gallstones. We consulted our family doctor and got all the necessary tests done. At the end of it, the doctor advised consulting a bigger hospital as her situation looked a bit more complicated. We consulted another familial doctor and conducted a couple more tests. That is when we found out there was a tumor in her stomach. A CT scan later, we found out she had stage four gallbladder cancer. It had spread to her lymph nodes too. Although we were distraught, we made a quick decision to startchemotherapy. After eight cycles ofchemotherapy, the tests revealed that her cancer had significantly reduced. The doctor suggested getting the tumor operated. After a year-long fight against gallbladder cancer, my mother was finally free from it. She took a month to recover at the hospital, but it was almost like nothing had ever happened to her when she returned home. She went on regular morning walks and controlled her diet. As a precaution, we would take her for a periodic checkup every three months. The doctor then recommended that we could have a regular checkup every six months since her tests were utterly routine. While this sounded like positive news, the outcomes were not. The battle with gallbladder cancer was far from over In 2018, cancer spread to her lymph nodes, but this time due to a delay in checkup, its size was consequential. All the doctors we consulted suggested avoiding Chemotherapy as she had already gone through too many sessions before, which could further deteriorate her health. We consulted another doctor, and he prescribed the same treatment. So once again, she went through 6 more sessions of Chemotherapy. The results were positive, and she was slowly recovering too. But six months after the treatment, she had a Pain in her lower back. After a CT scan, it was found that not only had cancer resurfaced, but she also developed Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) because of the excessive Chemotherapy sessions. This time, to avoid any further complications with her kidneys, we consulted with a nephrologist before taking up each Chemotherapy cycle. The good part about this was that cancer remained stagnant, but after two months of treatment, she again felt Pain in her nodes. At this point, we just wanted to eliminate her Pain. Her doctor recommended trying out Radiotherapy. She went through 25 sessions of Radiotherapy and came out completely fine. She maintained an optimistic attitude through it all and was always comfortable with all the treatments. She was energetic and even carried on with morning walks and exercises. A few months later, she went through another round of Radiotherapy. The cancer was spreading to chest nodes, and she was suffering from persistent fevers. This session helped her to an extent, but when we went for a checkup a few weeks later, scans showed that she had developed fluid in both her lungs. The doctor suctioned the juice out of her lungs and prescribed her medicines for another month. The Pain returned in two months. Ultimately, we decided on Immunotherapy. We sent her DNA Gene test reports to the US. They determined that the tumor mutational burden was at an intermediate level. I contacted many hospitals, but they had a different opinion on Immunotherapy since it was intermediate. Some hospitals advised going for the second-best treatment, but that would involve risking both her kidneys while the others suggested trying Chemotherapy once again. My mom, at this point, was already on morphine for a year. So after a lot of consideration, we decided to go for Immunotherapy. When we gave her the first shot of Immunotherapy, her Pain was relieved, and the tumor suppressed within a week. Fifteen days later, he got another round of shots. But this time, he, unfortunately, contracted pneumonia. But due to high doses of medicines with fentanyl patches and morphine, she developed Parkinsons disease. My mother was now suffering from gallbladder cancer, chronic kidney disease, and Parkinsons disease. Additionally, she was mostly functioning on only one lung. We took her to the hospital, where she stayed for 40 days, to treat all her ailments. At some point during her stay in the hospital, she fell off the bed and was injured. She had to start using a wheelchair as she could not walk around anymore due to Parkinsons disease. The doctors claimed that it was a miracle, but my mom recovered soon. They did many more tests on her, and all of them came out normal. Within a few days, she was discharged and back home. Of course, she was bedridden and had to use the wheelchair to move around, but she felt better. A month later, she complained about her stomach feeling very tight and had difficulty moving. So we took her to the hospital. Her Ultrasound reports revealed that sepsis had developed in the stomach area and infected her lungs. We got her admitted by evening, but her condition worsened. Her blood pressure, sugar level, and saturation level all dropped overnight, so she was ruhed to ICU in the morning. The doctor said that her liver was damaged because of years of excessive medicines and the chances of survival looked bleak. At the time, we had a lot of palliative counseling about this situation. "What would you do in this situation? Would you like to opt for the ventilator or not? I had decided that we would not be using the ventilator. In her last few days, we looked for her comfort. We wanted to keep her Pain low and be prepared to let go when it was time to do so. My thoughts about the journey The journey in itself was five and a half years, but during that time, we always made her feel like it was expected, and everything would end soon. Throughout her treatments, we convinced her that she would be fine, so she always maintained that optimistic outlook. She struggled, but never lost her cheery smile and personality. Maintaining this attitude was crucial to avoid falling into a depressive episode. This journey made me realize many things. Firstly, in terms of cost, the treatment was very financially draining. But again, it made me wonder how poor people could afford to pay for such expensive treatments like Immunotherapy. We were paying 7-8 lakh every month for my mothers treatment. I saw how backward palliative care is in government hospitals. Whenever I would take my mother to a government hospital, she would receive treatment while sitting in a chair or even on the floor. I realized that most government hospitals do not know how to treat a patient who has multiple complications simultaneously. The quality of treatment in government hospitals is still very primitive. Since the doctors have over 100 patients to treat every day, it is clear that they are overburdened, which is why a patient and caregiver need to choose a doctor and hospital very carefully. For too complicated cases, like my mothers, it is better to choose a private hospital. For some patients, Naturopathy may work, but for others, allopathy is the only choice. One standard treatment does not work for every single cancer patient. But the decisions should be taken diligently, as one wrong move could cost you everything. Mental healthwise, this journey has affected my mental health as a caregiver. My personal life was involved too, and I even lost my job because I would have four appointments a week to attend with my mother. People in society dont understand this, not unless they know what the person is going through. We realized that in a joint family, she would have someone to take care of her. So we invited relatives from our hometown every once in a while. Being around people helped her a lot. Parting message To all the patients and caregivers, I have only one piece of advice. Always keep your hopes high; it is the only thing you can hold on to. Having a positive frame of mind helped my mom to deal with this disease without any mental trauma. Yes, she was in pain, but she still smiled through it all, hoping that she would come out of it one day. Also, feel free to cry when you need to; it helps relieve distress. Another practical advice Id like to give is to be conscious of what you are doing. Do not panic during the treatment but do maintain a certain level of awareness. As a caregiver, you need to be proactive. Never have the lets wait until it happens to see what we can do. Be decisive of what and how you want to go about the treatment. Often caregivers, and even patients, undermine their need to socialize and try staying isolated. You will have no one but your close family and friends to keep you smiling in these trying times. It would help if you tried to be in touch with people who have similar experiences as you. They can provide more comfort than any other person can. https://youtu.be/g2xEQA8JStQ
Anirudh Jamadagni (ALL): Against All Odds

Anirudh Jamadagni (ALL): Against All Odds

Background: A software techie based in Banglore, Anirudh was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia, Type 2 Cancer, Stage 3 . He went through ragging throughout his childhood developed learning disabilities due to the side effect of Cancer Treatment. As if un-touchability in his extended family wasnt harrowing enough, even his married life was affected and his wife filed for divorce. But thanks to his loving family, he conquered all odds and emerged victorious. Diagnosis: On 5th March 1995, he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia Type 2, Stage 3. Among 40 kids admitted that he had only a meager chance of survival. Treatment: Anirudh went through 32 chemo cycles, 48 bone marrows, and 42 radiation cycles. Observation, Maintenance, and Relapse are three stages of Cancer Treatment. Bone Marrow was really tough and painful for Anirudh. Some injections put through the veins literally burnt his nervous junction. One particular tablet led to the growth of thorn-like growth in his throat. Family Support: His father wasnt mentally strong enough to see his son going through all the physical Pain but his mother was with him day and night. His teachers, parents, and friends supported him very well. There was a taboo in his family, and he was treated as an untouchable in his extended family. Side Effects: Anirudh lost hair and his eardrums were affected. He went through major Surgery to revive his hearing ability. He had to cope up with academics. He developed a learning disability and dyslexia as radiation affected his learning ability. The immunity had gone to an all-time low and his body started stinking. He had to face frequent cold and fever. As if that wasnt enough, he developed Calcium deficiency and developed three to four fractures.
Nitin (Stage 3 Breast Cancer Caregiver): Be The Emotional Anchor

Nitin (Stage 3 Breast Cancer Caregiver): Be The Emotional Anchor

Treatment of Breast Cancer Stage 3 My mother was diagnosed with stage 3 Breast Cancer in 2019. Usually Breast Cancer lumps are detected in the breast cells. However, in my mothers case, some of the lumps also spread to her armpits. Remember, she is a Breast Cancer stage 3 survivor, after all. She had undergone 6-8 chemo sessions. These conventional Treatment for Breast Cancer indeed helped mom. Besides these, she also quite benefited from meditation and Ayurveda. She also had to take 6-7 Craniosacral therapy (CST) sessions. These sessions were relaxing for her. You know that Craniosacral therapy is non-invasive. It just applies moderate pressure on areas like head, neck, and back. So, this did great for mom as it relieved her from Stress and Pain to quite an extent. I think this kind of therapy should be recommended for all cancer patients, as it heals the side-effects of treatment, and boosts both immunity and moral. Family Support during her Breast Cancer Stage 3 In one word if I have to give my mothers Breast Cancer survivor testimonial, it would be "shocked. Yes, everyone in the family was just shocked to know her diagnosis. Ill say that the first few months were difficult for her. However, once her hair started to grow back after Chemotherapy and radiation, she truly began to heal from her cancer. Since then I knew that shell transform to tell herinspirational Breast Cancer survivor story one day. As a Breast Cancer caregiver, I had left my job and had gone home to spent time with my mother.During the entire period of her treatment, our whole family was there to support her. That must have helped her in the healing process. She had to go through a lot of Stress and Pain every day. My mother is courageous, super cheerful, and now she is a Breast Cancer stage 3 survivor. Any type of cancer journey is like an emotional rollercoaster ride. During this time it is crucial that the patient is not left alone. Give as much emotional support as possible. In this world of technological advancements, medical support and survival rate are increasing. Everything has become fast paced. Things are constantly evolving and changing. The only thing that remains constant is family. Therefore, it is our duty as a supportive family to stay strong and united. We must ensure that we become powerful emotional pillars for the cancer patient. Their families are their emotional anchors. "The Art of Living of a Breast Cancer Stage 3 Survivor Breast cancer or not, our entire family is a fan, admirer and follower of Guru Dev Shri Shri Ravi Shankar. We came across so many Breast Cancer Indian survivors stories in the Art of Living community. Such real life Breast Cancer stories motivated us. I think such Breast Cancer survivor testimonials and inspirational breast cancaer survivor stories were one of the keys to my mothers own healing journey. My personal experience is that during and after hospital treatment, the following activities should be tried by any cancer patient, to whatever extent possible: YogaMeditationSudarshan Kriya All those breathing techniques practiced at the Art of Living community helped my mother and even my family to achieve a calm and peaceful state of mind. They flushed out much of our daily Stress. We were able to see things from a different perspective. My mother is now completely recovered from Breast Cancer. Every three months we visit doctors for follow-up. Parting Message for Breast Cancer Caregivers Be the emotional anchor for your loved ones. Try meditation and Sudarshan Kriya, because they give you emotional stability to heal from cancer. Youll realize that everything falls into place automatically.
Dhiman Chatterjee (Blood Cancer Caregiver): Positivity Is A Way Of Life

Dhiman Chatterjee (Blood Cancer Caregiver): Positivity Is A Way Of Life

We take life for granted, but we should live our life to the fullest. We should keep our life simple and enjoy our precious life. Blood Cancer Diagnosis She didnt have any symptoms as such for her Blood Cancer. She had been complaining of fatigue, but we dismissed it as she was busy with her work and regular tours for official purposes. She also developed a headache, which continued for more than a week, and slowly she developed trouble walking also. At this point, we went to a doctor who advised us several Blood Tests. The laboratory called us and said that her sample might be contaminated as her reports were not normal, and we gave the samples again. We went to another laboratory and got the test done, but the next day we got to hear the same thing: there might be something wrong. Her WBC counts were exceptionally high, and our doctor asked us to consult a hematologist. After looking at the reports, the hematologist said it seems like Leukemia. We got a few more genetic tests, and once the reports came, we got to know it was ETP Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, a type of Blood Cancer. Blood Cancer Treatment We went to Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai, and many of our friends helped and guided us in the process. We were in denial, and we didnt think it would happen because its the last thing anyone would want to hear. Eventually, we accepted it and got ready to fight. Her Chemotherapy started on 8th March, and later, she started consoling me. I believe we should not lose hope initially; lets start the treatment and go with it. As for side effects due to the Blood Cancer treatment, her platelets, WBC counts and hemoglobin started decreasing. She used to eat papaya to increase the Platelet counts. She used to walk a lot during her treatment. She started having hair fall, so she got herself shaved. She embraced her new look, and I also shaved myself to support her more. Caregivers too suffer a lot on the cancer journey. My wife used to fix a routine, and I had to have my food when she eats anything. She knew that once I skip my meal, it will be skipped for the whole day, so she asked me to eat whatever snacks I could. I used to eat whatever she ate because I thought it would not make her feel alone. The doctor asked us to go for a bone marrow transplantation because that was the best option left for us. We approached stem cell donor banks. I think we should all register for stem cell donation as we can save a life through the simple process. We got a donor, and she got admitted for her transplantation. Bone marrow transplantation is a very expensive procedure, but we managed it anyway. She underwent many things before her transplantation, and then she underwent her bone marrow transplantation in 2019. Everything was going fine, but her immunity was low, and she developed a CMV infection. This infection created havoc in her body. Her counts dropped, and due to the CMV virus and her low immunity, she developed an autoimmune disease. It affected her brain and breathing capacity. She was on the ventilator for two and a half days. Though she was in a BMT ward where no one is allowed to enter, the doctor allowed us to meet her because she wanted to meet her family members. Even while being on a ventilator, she asked me why I was there and not in the office as it was a weekday; thats was her spirit, and she was so active in her work. She could not manage to overcome it, and on 18th January, she left for her heavenly abode right in front of my eyes. She was always very positive and had even kept her WhatsApp status that positivity is a way of life. The doctors and the hospital staff have helped us immensely, and I am very grateful for that. Many beautiful souls helped us a lot, and I can never forget that. I am grateful to every single person who was with us on our journey. Parting Message Be positive, eat healthily, exercise properly, take the medications on time and keep smiling. Enjoy every moment of your life. No one can change what is going to happen but let us make the best of the moment. Caregivers need to take care of themselves too. https://youtu.be/iYGDrBU6wGQ
Dilshad (Breast Cancer): She Was Always Smiling

Dilshad (Breast Cancer): She Was Always Smiling

Diagnosis: My mother-in-law had Stage One Breast Cancer in 2001. She had lumps for two years and two years after the Surgery she passed away. How many cycles of chemo and radiation did she go through? She was treated at a hospital in Colaba. Two years after she removed lumps she expired. Any alternative treatment? She had joined Yoga and it helped her. How was the experience with the doctor? We were fine. Any missing link in the treatment? Any drawbacks? She would have decided if the decision wasnt the removal of a breast. The call we ultimately took was to remove them. Except for Nausea, she didnt face any other problems. Any inspiration or role model? Herself and her husband who provided immense moral support were their role models. Its very difficult to be in their shoes Try, thats the only thing we can do. A caregiver, even after the patient passes away can reach out to people using talking platforms and communities. She could manage her personal life and was a lively Independent lady who hated displaying her Pain. Despite all the pain, she was happily managing her personal life Message: People ask patients to be happy and positive. It is easier said than done Fond Memories: She remained calm throughout her Pain. Even a month before her passing away, we went to Lonavala. We knew it would be the last family get-together. My son was barely a few months old. We did it so that she could spend time with her first grandchild. My mother-in-law was always smiling. We at ZenOnco.io have several such warrior stories and stories of caregivers who help cancer patients heal themselves.
Nikita Khanna (Mouth Cancer): Music Is The Language Of Spirit

Nikita Khanna (Mouth Cancer): Music Is The Language Of Spirit

January 19, 2020 My mother was diagnosed with mouth cancer. Mouth or Oral Cancer is the cancer of lining of lips, mouth or upper throat. It usually starts as a painless white patch and later develops red patches, ulcers and continues to grow. We went for a couple of rounds of Chemotherapy and the first two operations took place in Hinduja Hospital, Mumbai.Chemotherapy drugs will interfere with a cancer cells ability to divide and reproduce more cells. This can be done by a single drug or combination of drugs. It is an invasive treatment and has a considerable amount of impact on the body. The treatment can often lead to loss of appetite and my mother had started to eat very less. The cancer was in her mouth so her eating restrictions were more.After the third round of treatment, she opted for oral Chemotherapy. The location of administration of the drug is a huge advantage over the parental route. Here, the drug is given by mouth in the form of a pill or capsule. There were quite a few things that were therapeutic for her during the treatment. My mother was engaged in Yoga and she wanted to be physically active for as long as possible. She would often listen to meditative and serene music and found it very peaceful.Kahlil Gibransaid, "Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife. This is extremely true as it brought her happiness in times of difficulty and Pain. I was able to find a couple of treatments that had been proved useful in certain studies but my mother was bedridden before anything could be executed. She was quite old and rightfully sceptical about some medication like Cannabis oil. Even though the oil was going to be used for a specific medicinal purpose, its usage is a taboo in our society. Most doctors stick to diet plans and traditional therapy and a lot of pathways are not explored. There have been more than 18 million cancer patients and less than half of them survived the condition. We live in a privileged world where the answers to all our questions lie seconds away from us and knowledge can be spread faster than ever. It is important to discuss more possible solutions as there is no fixed cure for this disease. We lost our dad in 2016 and sadly next year my mother was diagnosed with cancer, She was sixty-two years old when she passed away in 2019 and she fought till the last moment. It was a tough 3 years for us. Cancer must not deter you from your will to live. It is not necessarily a fatal disease and there are several methods of possible cure being discovered even today. So always be prepared for the worst and hope for the best!
Atanu Pramanik (Liver Cancer): Give It Your Best Fight!

Atanu Pramanik (Liver Cancer): Give It Your Best Fight!

This is the story of my father who was diagnosed with terminal cancer at the age of 54 years. He had an ulcer in the intestine which converted into cancer and spread to the liver which is called liver metastasis and ulcerative colitis. It was in the last stage when we found out and before that he had no symptoms. He was leading a normal life and was running a small-time business. He was diagnosed on 22nd April 2018 with cancer like developments in his body but it was not confirmed as the tests were still to be conducted. We received the reports confirming cancer a week later and as we live in Goa we did not have enough facilities to handle the same. I was working with Reliance in Mumbai and as my father is ex-Navy, we consulted some doctors in the Naval Hospital in Colaba and H.M. Hospital. We admitted him to the Naval hospital but the process was going very slow, so we shifted him to H.M. Hospital where he was given Chemotherapy. His body was consumed with cancer and organs started failing. He could not cope up with the chemotherapy, and he was soon shifted to the ICU, where after four to five days he passed away. In a journey of less than one and a half months, everything was over, and we had no time to cope up with it. As I am the only son he wanted to see me married, so we just went to a temple and did all rituals and formalities for his happiness. This is the journey that will remain in my heart forever; a battle that we fought but lost with cancer. We did all that had to be done to see him pass on with a smile on his face. Everyone in the family and some of my colleagues were fighting for it, but we could not win over cancer. When you ask whether we tried any other method to chemotherapy, I would say no as the doctors had said that as it is the last stage of cancer nothing alternate would work. The time frame we had was very short. His body could not even take the chemo session that was given to him. His cancer had spread into his intestine, liver, and blood too. We faced no problems from the doctors or the hospital as our family doctor, Dr.Tingua, had already given us a rough picture of what to expect. He also recommended doctors in Mumbai as did my colleagues. As the condition was grave we could not do anything. The doctors were very co-operative and good at guiding. It was a pre-death scenario as we had no time to do anything. We went ahead with whatever was possible, but we could not do much. My father was in Pain and I could not do much about it. He accepted that he had to go through with it and that we had to give it a try. He was a tough fighter, and we are proud of that. I would just like to say that life is minimal. Give it your best fight no matter which stage you are in. Life is something that never ends. Cancer is not a full stop as a sentence always starts after a full stop. So find your sentence and live life. I met a lot of cancer patients when I went to the hospital with my father. I met a two-year-old boy who had cancer and was undergoing his seventh or eighth Chemo session, and he was still smiling and playing with his toy. So, it is the attitude that you have that matters and the environment you create around- a positive one. My fathers journey changed many things in my life. Many new things have been incorporated into my life; regular exercises, change in kind of meal being eaten, lifestyle changes, the way we make decisions in life, financial planning, and many more such changes. We can only be prepared as cancer is a lifestyle disease that cannot be predicted.
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