Approach to Care: Cancer
Grand Canyon University, NRS410v
July 5, 2015
There are over one hundred different types of cancer, and they all begin with the development and proliferation of abnormal cells. If untreated, cancer can cause illness, debilitation and death. In normal cell function, cells replicate and produce new cells as old cells are dying. Under normal circumstances out of control cellular reproduction does not occur. Cancer cells also grow in to other tissues invading their cellular structure. If the structural DNA of a cell is damaged, the cell then tries to repair itself and if unable the cell dies. Cancer cells do not die. They continue to replicate the cells with damaged DNA and spread the disease. Cancer cells are able to invade blood and body tissues and travel to different areas in the body where the damaged cells can invade and crowd out healthy tissue (What is Cancer, 2015). This paper will discuss the diagnosis, staging & complications of cancer, treatment options and side effects as well as methods to lessen physical and psychological effects.
Diagnosis and Staging
Early diagnosis of cancer is the key to early medical intervention and reduction in mortality. Diagnosing cancer can begin as simply as the discussion you have with your physician during a regular checkup. Pertinent medical history as well as family history of disease is important to identify risk factors. Laboratory data analyzing urine, blood and other bodily fluid specimens for high or low values helps in diagnosis of certain cancers. Diagnostic imaging studies looking for abnormal growth or function of body systems can include x-rays, CT scans, MRI, nuclear studies, ultrasound or PET scans. These imaging studies can identify areas of abnormal growth but do not in themselves make the diagnosis of cancer official. In most cases a biopsy is required for a definitive diagnosis. A biopsy is where a specimen of affected tissue is...