Common Queries about Cancer

Since when do I have the disease?
Though it is usually not possible to state the exact duration, but generally a cancer has been growing for a few months or years before it is detected

Could this have been caused by an old injury?
Old injuries don’t cause cancer, though in few cases it may occur in very old scars

How long will I live?
This is generally a presumptive estimate made depending on the type of cancer, stage of cancer, general condition of the patient and response to treatment

Will treatment help?
Treatment cures several, prolongs life in few and decreases the pain and other problems in all

What should I eat?
Except during chemotherapy when raw fruits and vegetables are to be avoided, a cancer patient should eat a normal diet that they can tolerate

What should I eat to prevent cancer?
Green vegetables and fresh fruits like carrot and apple and Vit A C and E prevent cancer

What should be my lifestyle?
Every cancer patient should live a normal life with all the daily personal and official duties that he or she can perform without getting tired

Can I spread cancer to others in the house?
Staying in the same house, by contact or by even eating food together, does not spread Cancer

Should I get married?
Yes a cancer patient can get married, but it is advisable that the patient should get married at least after two years of completion of treatment. Most recurrence of cancer occurs within two years of completion of treatment. The patient and the family members should inform the partner regarding the patient’s medical history of cancer. Off lately there are several marriages being arranged amongst cancer survivors

Can I have sex with my partner?
Yes cancer patients can have sex with their partners. However patients with cancers of the genital organs like the cervix or penis should avoid sex for at least one year and preferably two years after completion of treatment

Can I have Children?
Yes patients who are desirous of having children can have children after one or two years of treatment

Will I pass down the cancer to my child?
Though a few cancers are transmitted genetically, most cancer patients can have children without passing the cancer to them. However cancer patients planning to have children should consult a medical counselor before having a child

Does treatment affect childbearing?
Surgical removal of testis or ovaries, chemotherapy and radiotherapy to the testis or ovaries will adversely affect childbearing. Patients who have not completed their families and are to undergo these treatment and want a child later, should preserve their sperm or ovum before the treatment is started, to be used at a later stage

If my one child has cancer then will my other child have cancer too?
Some cancers have strong horizontal genetic familial presentation and may be seen in several siblings. Hence before planning a second child consultation with a counselor is a must

Does personality or stress cause cancer?
There are no scientific studies to prove that cancer is caused by stress or personality has any impact on its causation

Are there any Societies or Groups providing help for cancer patients?
There are a large number of Social Welfare Groups like V Care, Cancer Sahyog, Cancer Care, Prerna etc which provide, social, moral, psychological, medical and even financial support to cancer patients and their relatives

What are the other facilities available for cancer patients?
Cancer patients and one attendant gets 75 % concession in rail travel and 50 % concession in air travel throughout life to travel from home town to the city of treatment, for treatment or review. They are also entitles tax exemption on money spent on cancer treatment. Certain cancer institutes provide cancer care and medicines to poor patients at subsidized rates and even free. Financial aid for it can also be availed from Chief Ministers Funds

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