Esophageal cancer affects the esophagus and the patient suffers a lot. The esophagus is the tube in your chest that comes to your mouth and also stretched up to your stomach. If a person is suffering from esophageal cancer, the disease starts from the inner-most layer of the esophagus and spreads rapidly to the outer layers of the esophagus. There are certain things you need to know about esophageal cancer so that you can take certain precautions. Let’s find out the essential things you need to know about esophageal cancer here. Read on to know more-
· Types of Esophageal Cancer
Esophageal cancer is mainly of two types-
· Squamous Cell Carcinoma
The first one was rare in the ’70s and the ’80s, but in the last few decades, this cancer has increased rapidly and the main reason behind this is the increasing level of smoking and consuming alcohol. Usually, squamous cell carcinoma is the common type of esophageal cancer and if you don’t quit smoking now, that can lead towards adenocarcinoma.
Risk Factors of Esophageal Cancer
Smoking and drinking are the predominant reason behind the deterioration of esophageal cancer, but it can happen to anyone. What are the risk factors of this deadly disease? The common risk factors of this disease are-
· Smoking cigars and pipes
· People with Barrett’s Esophagus
· People with Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD
· Family history of esophageal cancer
If you are suffering from Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, you can often suffer from a burning sensation at your chest and acid reflux to your mouth. It happens when the bile juice returns back to your esophagus and cause this sensation in your throat and chest. People often suffer from GERD and acidity and with simple care, those can be cured. But, if the problems persist and come back after a regular gap, you have reasons to get worried.
Treatment Options for Esophageal Cancer
As the primary symptoms of esophageal cancer are often similar to the symptoms of GERD, acid reflux, etc. it is really difficult to diagnose the disease at the first stage. And when the disease is diagnosed at the later stage, surgeons operate to remove cancer from the esophagus. Specialists also recommend radiation and chemotherapy at this stage, before doing the surgery.
Diagnosis Process of Esophageal Cancer
To diagnose esophageal cancer, a doctor performs lots of tests to determine the stage of cancer. Such tests include-
· Complete blood count
· Chest x-rays
· Barium swallow
· Blood chemistry studies
· Endoscopic ultrasound
So, these are certain things that you can know about esophageal cancer. If you want to stay away from this disease, quit smoking now and also limit drinking alcohol. Also, you need to maintain a healthy weight and lead a good lifestyle.