ABDOMINAL CANCERS- FOUR SIGNS YOU SHOULD KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR

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ABDOMINAL CANCERS- FOUR SIGNS YOU SHOULD KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR

Abdominal cancers or gastrointestinal cancers make up six out of top ten cancer deaths in the whole world. They include cancers of the esophagus (foodpipe), stomach, pancreas, livergallbladder & bile ducts, colon & rectum and appendix. The most important factor on which final survival of these patients depend is the stage of the cancer at the time of diagnosis. Earlier the stage better is the outcome and overall survival. Ironically majority of patients present quite late in the course of their disease thus having a late stage disease. This happens because mostly people are not aware about which symptoms to look for as the sign of early cancer.

Following are the signs which we should be careful about and in case they are there we must see the specialist.

  1. Non-specific yet persisting symptoms like- post meal discomfort, vague fullness with or without meals, anorexia (feeling of no hunger), reduction in weight, feeling of being feverish

If any of these alone or in combination were there for more than 2-3 weeks you must see the specialist who deals with gastrointestinal diseases.

  1. Difficulty in swallowing food
  2. Jaundice
  3. Bleeding in stools

BARIATRIC SURGERY: BENEFITS AND RISKS

Bariatric surgery is done laparoscopically to treat the problem of morbid obesity. This is the only method which can offer significant and sustainable weight loss in addition to the reversal of the metabolic problems like type II diabetes.

Benefits-

  1. It decreases the risk to life (more than 60%) due to life threatening diseases which can happen in morbidly obese people. They include heart attacks, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnoea, sudden death, cancers, hyperlipidaemia.
  2. Increased life expectancy
  3. Increased quality of life
  4. Sense of wellbeing in terms of physical, mental, professional and social wellbeing
  5. Reversal of diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnoea
  6. Cure for infertility
  7. Increased productivity on both personal and professional front
  8. Decreased cost of living
  9. Improved self-image and more confidence
  10. Better looks

Risks-

  1. Minimal risk of complications to the tune of only 0.2-0.5 % (in comparison of risk of complications of morbid obesity that is to the tune of 60%)
  2. Risk of hair fall in initial days after surgery- this is mostly reversible with high protein and vitamin intake
  3. Deficiency of vitamins, iron and calcium- this can be taken care of by taking regular supplements
  4. Formation of loose skin over limbs and tummy- this is not very common and it can be taken care of by skin toning or in few cases by plastic surgery to remove extra loose skin

To conclude all the risks associated with bariatric surgery are hardly significant in comparison to the risk associated with the disease of morbid obesity.