Cancer

All You Need To Know About Rehabilitation After Cancer Surgery

Rehabilitation is an integral part of the recovery process for patients post cancer surgery. The treatment during rehabilitation depends on several factors including the site of the surgery and age of the patient, among others. Additional treatment, like radiation therapy, chemotherapy and exercises may be recommended after surgery to complement the process of recovery. Medicines may be prescribed to patients for expediting the healing process and ensuring a wholesome physical and emotional healing. Oncologists like Dr. Amish Dalal assess the physical condition of patients in order to decide on the necessary rehabilitation.

Cancer surgeries may necessitate the complete or partial removal of certain affected parts of the body and surrounding tissues that are malignant. Inflammation if any around the surgical wound is not uncommon. Rehabilitation usually offers a wide scope for expediting the healing process. Physical therapy may be advised two or three weeks after a cancer surgery.  Dr. Amish D Dalal, an accomplished Surgical Oncologist, examines the patient’s condition post-surgery and recommends the next line of treatment.

What post-surgery rehabilitation can do for patients

Post surgery rehabilitation aims to treat common symptoms experienced after surgery. The nature of rehabilitation that a patient may require depends on the post-surgical care needed, the type of surgery that was conducted, and the site of the surgery.

Rehabilitation often proves to be beneficial for relieving patients in the following ways:

  • Reduction in pain arising from the site of surgery
  • Reduction in inflammation around the operated area
  • Increase in the range of motion
  • Boost in physical strength
  • Restoration of regular lifestyle and activities

Amish Dalal reviews the condition of patients post-surgery and decides upon the necessity of rehabilitation and the course that needs to be undertaken.

Symptoms that may indicate the necessity for rehabilitation

Cancer surgery, like any other surgery, requires time to heal completely to enable patients to return to their usual way of life. However, there may be symptoms that impede the healing process. These could be:

  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Pain at the site of surgery
  • Difficulty in undertaking daily activities
  • Inflexibility of muscles
  • Difficulty in concentrating or memorising

Doctors observe patients after a surgery, both before and after their discharge from the hospital. This helps them know how well the patient is recovering, and in administering the necessary post-surgical care. Doctor Amish Dalal recommends his patients to regularly monitor their health and discuss their progress and concerns with him post surgery.

Here are some professionals that help with post-cancer surgery rehabilitation

A team of experts work in coordination with an oncologist in administering the necessary post-surgery rehabilitation while patients are at the hospital. After discharge, the oncologist may recommend patients to other specialists to aid the process of recovery.

A team of rehabilitation experts usually includes the following:

Rehabilitation Specialist: Assists patients in achieving the desired range of movement of limbs, and regaining their strength.

Physiotherapist: Helps patients regain mobility. This is essential for patients who have undergone a cancer surgery that has affected their movement. Those with difficulty in balancing, suffering from loss of muscles due to prolonged bed rest, and patients walking with an assistive device get to benefit from physiotherapy. Patients can also be administered radiation

Dietician: Patients need to follow a strict diet especially after a surgery, to restore their health. With a thorough knowledge of the daily nutritional needs of patients, dieticians regulate their food intake to monitor the body weight so as to aid in recovery. While there are dieticians to ensure the correct nutritional value at hospitals, patients may consult a professional dietician for advice on the necessary diet chart after their release from the hospital. Amish Dalal recommends patients to follow the prescribed diet during the rehabilitation period.

Psychologist/Counsellor: During the prolonged course of the illness, some patients may require counselling support. Psychologists counsel patients for their mental and emotional well-being. Amish Dalal, an expert Oncologist, may recommend counselling if needed.

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Factors That Enhance & Reduce the Risk of Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian cancer is the third most commonly known cancer among Indian women, ahead of breast and cervical cancer. Though genes and genetic history is believed to play a vital role in women developing ovarian cancer, it may spread from the fallopian tubes as well. Genetic tests may help patients in estimating the extent of risk of developing ovarian cancer. For patients who may need surgery, Dr. Amish V Dalal, an acclaimed Surgical Oncologist with 30 years of experience in the field, recommends the necessary line of treatment.

Factors that may increase the risk of ovarian cancer:

Some commonly recognised risk factors that may lead to ovarian cancer:

  • Age: It usually affects women who have been through menopause, that is, above the age of 50, though it may develop among younger women as well.
  • Family history: A woman with more than one relative affected by ovarian cancer from the same side of the family, may be at a higher risk of developing the disease. The increased risk of being affected by cancer in the ovary is commonly believed to be the result of a faulty gene, BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation. Women with an enhanced risk of cancer in their genes are advised to opt for a genetic testing. Genetic counselling, conducted by healthcare professionals, evaluates the family history and personal medical condition of individuals. They are trained to review the likely presence of the gene mutations that are closely associated with the increased risk of ovarian cancer. For medical tests that indicate that further treatments may be required apart from chemotherapy, Amish Dalal advises the necessary future course of treatment.
  • Hormonal changes: Early puberty, that is, commencement of menstruation before the age of 12, and late menopause, or the onset of the same after the age of 50, may enhance the risk of women developing ovarian cancer.
  • History of child-bearing: Women who have issues in conceiving, have not had children, conceived after the age of 30, or have never used oral contraceptives are believed to be at a marginally greater risk of developing ovarian cancer. This may be due to the ovary being exposed to the frequent process of break and repair of its surface owing to monthly ovulation.
  • Unhealthy lifestyle: Being overweight due to a high fat diet or smoking may increase the risk of ovarian cancer.
  • Endometriosis: When the ‘endometrium’ or the tissue lining the uterus is also present on the outer surface of the organ, it may increase the risk of the development of cancer in the ovary. Doctor Amish Dalal analyses the existing medical condition of patients being administered chemotherapy and recommends a surgery, if necessary.

 

 

Factors that may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer

Some commonly recognised factors that may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer:

  • Opting for a surgery for the removal of both the ovaries, Tubal Ligation (a surgery for getting both the tubes tied) or hysterectomy may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. But these surgeries should be undertaken only on valid medical reasons rather than for reducing the risk of developing cancer in the ovary. Studies conducted till date are inconclusive about the prospect of Tubal Ligation being an effective surgical procedure for reducing the risk of ovarian cancer. If a patient undergoing hysterectomy has a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, the surgical oncologist may consider removing both the ovaries and the fallopian tube. Amish Vasant Dalal assesses the medical condition of his patients and recommends surgery accordingly.
  • Using birth control pills or oral contraceptives for five years or more may reduce the risk of the disease. However, it is mandatory that women consult their doctor before consuming these pills as they may be accompanied by possible risks like increased chances of breast cancer
  • Having conceived and given birth before the age of 30 may also reduce the risk of the disease.
  • Breastfeeding for at least a year may slightly reduce the risk of developing ovarian cancer

Patients diagnosed with malignant tumours can book an appointment with Amish Dalal at Jaslok Hospital, Breach Candy Hospital, Bhatia General Hospital, Saifee Hospital or Parsee General Hospital.

Book an appointment today.

Types of Gynaecological Cancer

Cancerous tumours can be of two types – benign and malignant. While benign cancers are harmless and do not require treatment, malignant tumours need care for their removal from the human body. Greater awareness about gynaecological cancers and their probable symptoms will help people to widen their knowledge about cancers.

 

The following are some common and rare types of gynaecological cancer:

 

Cervical cancer

 

Cervical cancer is one of the most common types of cancer affecting women, second only to breast cancer. The tumour develops in the tissues of the cervix, which is the lowermost narrow-end of the uterus. When a medical oncologist suspects the presence of a tumour in the cervix, he recommends a screening test, called the Pap smear, in which the sample of cells is taken from the cervix for diagnosis. Another recommended diagnostic method is the HPV (Human Papillomavirus) screening test for diagnosing the presence of high-risk HPV strains, which may be the reason for the growth of the cancerous tumour in the cervix.

 

Common symptoms of cervical cancer are unusual vaginal discharge, vaginal bleeding, bleeding after sexual intercourse, and back and pelvic pain. However, the occurrence of these symptoms does not necessarily indicate at cervical cancer. Women who have multiple sexual partners, had sexual intercourse at an early age, smoke cigarettes or have a weak immune system may also be prone to suffering from these symptoms. If the tests show at the presence of malignant tumour in the cervix and indicate at the necessity for other forms of treatment besides chemotherapy, a patient can approach Dr. Amish Dalal for further advice.

 

Uterine or Endometrial Cancer

 

The lining of the uterus is referred to as the ‘endometrium’. Endometrial cancer usually occurs among women over 55 years of age. The common symptoms for cancer in the endometrium are abnormal discharge or bleeding, pain or difficulty in urinating, pain during sexual intercourse and pelvic pain. Women suffering from diabetes or obesity, or have a family history of Lynch Syndrome are believed to be at a higher risk of developing endometrial cancer. Dr. Amish V Dalal, a Surgical Oncologist with more than 30 years of experience, guides his patients on the necessity for further treatment.

Ovarian Cancer

As the name suggests, this cancer develops in the ovaries, the organ that produces female hormones and eggs. The tumour may also develop in the fallopian tube. The accompanying symptoms may be abdominal swelling and pain. Though there are no medical tests for effective diagnosis of ovarian cancer, patients need to undergo a physical examination by a health care professional. These diagnostic procedures may include physical examination of the reproductive organs, along with ultrasound, biopsy, blood tests or a CT scan. If the tests indicate at the necessity for parallel treatment, along with chemotherapy, Doctor Amish Dalal analyses his patients’ medical tests and recommends treatment accordingly.

Some of the most common risk factors are usually considered to be the presence of a family history of cancers in the breast, ovary and pancreas. Other factors for the growth of ovarian cancer may be intake of fertility drugs or hormone replacement therapy, infertility and the late onset of menopause.

Vaginal Cancer

There are two recognised types of cancer in the vagina – Squamous cell carcinoma and Adenocarcinoma. Squamous cell carcinoma is the more common out of the two. It manifests itself by the growth of tumour in the vagina and then may subsequently spread to other parts of the body like liver, lungs and bones. Adenocarcinoma, on the other hand, is formed in the glandular cells lining the vagina and usually shows a greater possibility of spreading to the lymph nodes and the lungs. This rare type of cancer usually affects women over the age of 60 and may grow in individuals who have undergone a hysterectomy or have contracted HPV. The common symptoms may be constipation, pelvic pain, unusual discharge or bleeding, vaginal lump, pain during sexual intercourse or pain during urination. A Pap smear test, biopsy and pelvic exam, among other tests may be recommended for detecting the presence of a cancer tumour. Amish Dalal reviews and thoroughly analyses the present medical condition of his patients before recommending the way forward.

Vulvar Cancer

This rare type of cancer develops in the external genitalia, with the most common area being the outer vaginal lip. It occurs when abnormal cells slowly grow on the vulvar skin. This condition is referred to as Vulvar Intraepithelial Neoplasia (VIN). A family history of genital warts and contraction of HPV may be some risk factors for the growth of vulvar cancer tumours. Some common symptoms are considered to be itching, unusual growth on the outer vagina, and abnormal bleeding and tenderness. Amish Dalal, an accomplished Gynaecologist, determines how his patients are responding to the current line of treatment and decide on the next course of action accordingly.

 

Patients diagnosed with cancer can book an appointment with Amish Dalal at Jaslok Hospital, Breach Candy Hospital, Bhatia General Hospital, Saifee Hospital or Parsee General Hospital.

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Symptoms of Bladder Cancer

Bladder cancer is usually recognised as a disease that is more prevalent among elderly men, especially above the age of 55 to 60. The National Institute of Health estimates that approximately 45,000 men as opposed to 17,000 women are diagnosed with the disease every year. However, advanced tumours are more common among women and indicate at a comparatively lower survival rate at all stages of the disease, according to a report by the National Cancer Institute. Additionally, bladder cancer among women is on the rise. The disease is usually treatable when diagnosed at an early stage and the line of treatment is undertaken promptly.  Awareness about the symptoms of the disease is the key to its detection at an early stage. When diagnosed at an advanced stage and requires a surgery, Dr Amish V Dalal, a Surgical Oncologist with over 30 years of experience, is accomplished at removal of cancerous tumours in the bladder.

 

The following may be the symptoms of bladder cancer:

  • Traces of blood in urine – The first symptom of the disease may be the presence of blood in urine, referred to as ‘Haematuria’ in medical terminology. At certain instances, the first symptoms of bladder cancer can also be similar to bladder infection, which may occur simultaneously with bladder cancer. The symptoms may include a change of urine colour to pale yellow-red or, very rarely, dark red. It may also have traces of blood, orange or dark brown in colour. However, while the blood traces are sometimes visible to the naked eye, at other times it may be diagnosed only through medical tests. Haematuria may also be the symptom of an infection, existence of bladder and kidney stones, and benign kidney disease. Visiting your physician for evaluation is usually the first step towards detecting the cause of the symptoms. If you are prescribed antibiotics and the symptoms persist thereafter, you need to revisit the physician immediately for further evaluation as it may indicate at the first symptoms of bladder cancer. During the course of diagnosis, if the medical tests indicate at the presence of a malignant tumour, a surgery along with therapies like radio therapy and chaemotherapy may be the cure for the disease. Amish Dalal is renowned as a surgeon for the removal of cancerous bladder tumours.

 

The primary reason why the diagnosis of bladder cancer among women is often delayed as compared to men is because traces of blood in urine is often associated with menstruation or menopause, preventing them from reporting the symptom to a gynaecologist. The symptom can also be misdiagnosed by women as post-menopausal bleeding, urinary tract infection or cystitis.

 

Among men, genitourinary malignancy often reaches the advanced stages before it is detected.  Prostate cancer usually poses as an impediment for early detection of bladder cancer. The risk of testicular cancer, which affects adolescent and young adult males, reduces with age. After 55 or 60 years of age, when men outgrow the risk of testicular cancer, the type of cancer that they usually get diagnosed with is prostate cancer, which has a higher probability of occurrence than bladder cancer.  As a result, cancer in the bladder often gets overlooked as a prospective diagnosis for these symptoms. Once tests detect the presence of a malignant tumour in the bladder, you may have to approach a surgical oncologist for the future line of treatment. Dr. Amish Vasant Dalal holds expertise in the surgical treatment of malignant neoplasms.

  • Urination problems – Frequent urination, pain during urination, inability to urinate or compulsion to urinate urgently even when the bladder is not full may be the symptoms of cancer in the bladder. However, these are the common signs of an infection or benign tumour, amongst other less serious conditions. Approaching a physician for diagnosing the reason of the symptoms, based on the tests that he may have prescribed is usually the next course of action usually followed. The existence of a tumour in the bladder as indicated through tests may require a surgery. Doctor Amish Dalal is proficient in removal of tumours from the bladder.
  • Lower back pain on one side – This may be an advanced symptom for larger bladder cancers. Cancer in the bladder is segregated into different types, stages and grades.
  • Other advanced symptoms – These may include swelling in the feet, feeling weak and tired very often, bone pain or loss of appetite and weight loss.

Patients diagnosed with malignant tumours can book an appointment with Amish Dalal at Jaslok Hospital, Breach Candy Hospital, Bhatia General Hospital, Saifee Hospital or Parsee General Hospital.

Signs & Symptoms of Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer is the second most common type of cancer that affects women, second only to breast cancer. It usually does not show any noticeable symptoms in most cases during the early stages of the disease. The common symptoms associated with cervical cancer may not be diagnosed until the disease becomes invasive and spreads to the surrounding tissues.

Cervical cancer may manifest itself in the form of abnormal cells around the opening of the cervix, referred to as cervical erosion. Cervical erosion occurs when glandular cells that are usually present inside the cervix grow out of the cervix into the vagina. It usually affects young girls, and women who are on the contraceptive pill or during their pregnancy. The disease may spread to the adjacent parts of the body. In such situations, Dr. Amish Dalal examines his patients and advises them according to what the situation requires.

Pap screening is necessary to detect the presence of abnormal cells in the cervix, so it can be treated at the early stages. It is often recommended that women opt for a routine Pap screening from the age of 21, so any growth of abnormal cells can be detected and treated at the earliest. Pap screening test is considered to be the most effective and reliable method of diagnosis till date, though they do not guarantee complete accuracy in detecting cervical cancer. Another diagnostic method is the HPV (Human Papillomavirus) screening test for detecting the presence of high-risk HPV strains that may be the root cause of cancer in the cervix. It is recommended for women above the age of 30. For patients who need any further treatment other than what is usually advised during the early stages, Dr. Amish Dalal reviews the patient’s condition and recommend the necessary course of treatment.

Common Symptoms of Cervical Cancer:

The symptoms that may be indicative of cervical cancer can be the symptoms of other diseases as well. For instance, infection in the cervix can also cause pain and bleeding. It is necessary to consult a health care professional and opt for the recommended medical tests to assuage any suspicion of cervical cancer. The earlier the diagnosis, the better may be the scope of starting on the treatment. If treatment other than chemotherapy is deemed to be necessary, Doctor Amish Dalal advises patients on the next line of treatment.