Home » How to reduce our risk and the right questions during screenings

How to reduce our risk and the right questions during screenings

by Marko Florentino
0 comment


Cancer risk is based on several factors, and while there is no absolute way to prevent all cancers, there are many things we can do to reduce our risk and be more aware, so that they can be treated early and most effectively. Dr. Marleen Meyers from the NYU Langone Perlmutter Cancer Center talked to us about the early warning signs, screening recommendations and prevention tips we should all be aware of:

What are frequently overlooked signs of possible cancer, so that I can be aware and follow up with my doctor if I recognize them?

While most apparent symptoms won’t turn out to be cancer, any change in your health is worth bringing up during a doctor’s visit. You know your body better than anyone and everyone should take note when something feels off. While many of us know the common presentations of cancer — lumps, bumps or blood where it’s not supposed to be — there are other things to look out for. 


Cancer risk is based on several factors, and while there is no absolute way to prevent all cancers, there are many things we can do to reduce our risk and be more aware, so that they can be treated early and most effectively
Cancer risk is based on several factors, and while there is no absolute way to prevent all cancers, there are many things we can do to reduce our risk and be more aware, so that they can be treated early and most effectively.

Unexplained fatigue, weight loss and poor appetite, or even depression, might be warning signs, so you should bring these up with your doctor during routine checkups. Changes in stool shape, size or color could also indicate something’s wrong. Even if these changes aren’t the result of cancer, they might be caused by something else that needs to be addressed. It never hurts to raise anything that concerns you with your doctor. 

Cancer survivors should be vigilant for symptoms that are persistent, which could indicate recurrence. At the same time, everyone must live their lives and realize that some aches and pains are normal. We all get headaches. If you start a new workout program, you’re going to get muscle fatigue. If those pains go away after a few days or with over-the-counter medication and don’t come back, you probably don’t have to worry about it. 

Even if I don’t have a family history of cancer, what should I still be getting screened for and when?

We know that screening is important for catching cancer early, which in most cases makes it easier to treat and leads to much better outcomes. Screening is as important as prevention, so here are some common steps to discuss with your doctor, depending on your age.


Marleen I. Meyers, MD, is a medical oncologist and the director of the Cancer Survivorship Program at NYU Langone Perlmutter Cancer Center.
Marleen I. Meyers, MD, is a medical oncologist and the director of the Cancer Survivorship Program at NYU Langone Perlmutter Cancer Center.

Mammograms are an important screening tool for breast cancer. We recommend all women receive mammograms annually once they turn 40. If the mother or another first-degree relative of a woman has had breast cancer, we recommend she gets screened at an earlier age, and also often recommend genetic testing, as there are certain mutations that can increase the risk of breast cancer. For these women, it may be recommended that they be screened more often and more intensely.

Colonoscopies are an important screening tool that is both diagnostic and preventative. The recommended age for getting a colonoscopy was recently lowered from 50 to 45 because we’re seeing more and more young people getting colon cancer. The goal of this screening isn’t just to spot cancer but to identify polyps, which have a chance of becoming cancerous, and removing them.

Particularly for males, prostate cancer is another important screening, which involves a physical exam and blood test when indicated, which again is dependent on your family history, and other factors like race. Ask your doctor about your risk and at what age you should be screened.

Other screenings include chest cavity scans for smokers, additional pancreatic cancer screenings for those with a family history and an annual skin check for skin cancers like melanoma.

One thing we can all do is be open with our relatives about any family history of cancer. Another is to talk to our primary care doctors about our risk and work with them to determine when it is best to be tested. Additionally, there are things we can do to reduce our risk of cancer, like lowering our alcohol use, not smoking and using sunscreen. While getting cancer is always a possibility, healthy habits will give people confidence in their health and improve overall wellness.


Marleen I. Meyers, MD, is a medical oncologist and the director of the Cancer Survivorship Program at NYU Langone Perlmutter Cancer Center. Her practice is largely devoted to treating people who have breast cancer, providing comprehensive care to improve lifestyle and health before, during and after treatment. 



Source link

You may also like

Leave a Comment

NEWS CONEXION puts at your disposal the widest variety of global information with the main media and international information networks that publish all universal events: news, scientific, financial, technological, sports, academic, cultural, artistic, radio TV. In addition, civic citizen journalism, connections for social inclusion, international tourism, agriculture; and beyond what your imagination wants to know

RESIENT

FEATURED

                                                                                                                                                                        2024 Copyright All Right Reserved.  @markoflorentino