Cancer finds mention in the Sanskrit literature that
goes on to illustrate that cancer is not a recent disease
of modern era, but that people knew about its origins
long back in ancient times. Cancer was mentioned in
Sanskrit Texts and in Ayurvedic literature.
Cancer is a dreaded disease that is affecting more
and more people, particularly with modern living styles.
Though the cure rate of cancer is improving, the rate
of cure is better only if detected early. It is said
that "the fear of cancer" and the associated
mental stress kills more people than cancer itself (close
to 1/3 or more). Another one third or more are killed
by the treatment (mainly Chemotherapy) given and by
the patient's inability to withstand the treatment.
It is well-known that for every cancer cell that Chemotherapy
it destroys 100 good, healthy cells also. It means that
cancer itself kills fewer people directly. People
who have confidence in their ability to pull on with
the disease and how to manage it survive and survive
Cancer occurs when cell division gets out of control.
Usually, the timing of cell division is under strict
control, involving a network of signals that work together
to say when a cell can divide, how often it should happen
and how errors can be fixed. Mutations in one or more
of the nodes in this network can trigger cancer, be
it through exposure to some environmental factor (e.g.
tobacco smoke) or because of a genetic predisposition,
or both. Usually, several cancer-promoting factors have
to add up before a person will develop a malignant growth
with some exceptions.
The predominant mechanisms for the cancers
- Impairment of a DNA repair pathway
- The transformation of a normal gene into an oncogene and
- The malfunction of a tumor supressor gene
All types of cancers are a result of the above mechanisms.
Details about various types of cancers can be obtained
from standard textbooks. Some highlights are given in
The reader is requested to go through the important
section on preventive measures.