Esophagus cancer happens in the tissue of the esophagus. It is a long tube that helps in moving food from your throat to your stomach. It is one of the tenth most common cancer in the world.
There are two types of Esophageal cancer:
- Adenocarcinoma – It affects the lower part of the esophagus. It develops in the tissue that makes mucus for swallowing.
- Squamous cell carcinoma – It affects the upper and middle part of the esophagus. It begins in the lining of squamous cells of the esophagus.
Several factors can increase the risk of Esophagus Cancer. Some factors influence the risk of Adenocarcinoma cancer while some can cause Squamous cell carcinoma in the esophagus. Some of the known risk factors discovered by scientists are –
- Age – People older than 55 years old.
- Gender – Men are more likely prone to esophagus cancer than women.
- Tobacco and alcohol – Smoking and frequent consumption of alcohol can increase the risk of esophagus cancer.
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease – Strong acids generated from the stomach escapes into the lower part of the esophagus.
- Obesity – Being overweight can cause inflammation in the esophagus.
- Diet – A diet high in processed meat may increase the chances of developing esophagus cancer.
- Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) – It can accuse tissue change in vocal cords, mouth, hands, feet, and genitals.
- Plummer-Vinson syndrome – People with this disorder have webs in the upper part of the esophagus, anemia, tongue inflammation, brittle fingernails, and a large spleen. Around 1 in 10 people with this disorder eventually develop squamous cell carcinoma.
- History of cancer – People who’ve got a history of head and neck cancer have a greater risk of developing esophagus cancer.
- Achalasia – The muscles at the lower end of the esophagus does not relax properly. In this medical condition, a person faces trouble swallowing food and liquid.
The signs and symptoms of esophageal depend on the cancer type, symptoms, and other conditions such as –
- Weight loss.
- Pain behind the breastbone.
- Hoarseness and cough.
- Indigestion and heartburn.
- A lump under the skin.
- Difficulty in swallowing
The procedures to diagnose esophagus cancer are –
- Physical examination – A complete body health check to examine the signs and symptoms of esophagus cancer like lumps or something unusual.
- Chest x-ray – An x-ray of organs or bones inside the chest.
- Esophagoscopy – A thin-like tube is inserted in the esophagus to check for abnormalities.
- Biopsy – A small amount of tissue is removed and checked under a microscope for signs of cancer.
After the diagnosis of esophagus cancer, tests are performed to find cancer spread in the esophagus and other parts of the body –
- CT scan – It uses an x-ray machine to create pictures of inside parts of the body such as the abdomen, chest, and pelvis.
- MRI – It uses a magnet, radio waves, and a computer to make detailed pictures of inside parts of the body.
- Ultrasound – It uses high-energy sound waves to view internal tissues or organs such as the neck and echoes.
- Thoracoscopy – A thin tube-like device is inserted after an incision (cut) is made between two ribs to view the detailed images of a chest for abnormal areas.
- Laparoscopy – A surgical procedure to check for detailed images inside the abdomen. A small incision (cut) is made into the abdomen wall to check for abnormalities.
The types of treatments used to treat esophagus cancer are –
- Surgery – It is the most common and effective treatment for esophagus cancer. A part of the affected esophagus is removed through esophagectomy. The healthy part of the esophagus is then connected to the stomach for a patient to begin swallowing. Lymph nodes may also be removed to check if it is affected by cancer. An expandable metal stent will be used to clear the esophagus blocked by the tumor.
- Radiation Therapy – It uses high-energy x-rays to kill cancer cells. The intensity of therapy is determined by the stage and type of cancer.
- Chemotherapy – It uses drugs to destroy cancer cells or stop them from growing. It is taken through the mouth or injected through veins to kill cancer cells through the bloodstream.
- Immunotherapy – It boosts the patient’s immune system to fight against cancer. Substances made in the body or a laboratory are used to increase the body’s natural defenses against cancer.
- Laser therapy – It uses a laser beam of intense light to kill cancer cells.
To reduce the risk of developing esophagus cancer a person can maintain a healthy weight, reduce the intake of tobacco and alcohol, lower the inflammation, and serious medical conditions from happening. Getting vaccinated against certain diseases such as HPV can reduce your risk of developing esophagus cancer.
Uhapo is a well-qualified cancer care service network that specializes in providing a variety of chemotherapy services. We are a dedicated team of health professionals providing effective solutions to all cancer patients in need. If you’ve concerns regarding your treatments and disorders then you can connect to Uhapo’s contact page – https://www.uhapo.co.in/contact/ or 24/7 Support Number +91-9137-44-1392 for supportive care regarding your necessary issues with cancer.