Recommendations for prevention, famous myths debunked and data about modern treatments
More and more Romanians face aggressive cancers such as those occurring in lungs, breast, stomach, colon or cervix. One of the reasons is postponing the visit to the doctor’s office. This is why many patients reach a specialist when the illness is advanced and the success chances of treatments decrease a lot.
“Cancer is quite an unpredictable illness. What we know for sure is that an early diagnosis increases the chances to life; in the case of breast tumors, the survival rate is of 90% if we diagnose them early on, in the case of prostate cancer, it is over 99%, and in the case of lungs cancer, 70%”, says the Turkish oncologist Ozlem Er who diagnoses and treats many patients from Romania who check in at the Acibadem Maslak hospital.
The increase in life expectancy led, also, to a higher number of malignant conditions along with aging. But the lifestyle, as well, has a role in triggering cancer.
“Genes are responsible for 50% of the conditions, while the environment factors are influencing the other half. Therefore, a healthy lifestyle decreases the risk of cancer with 50%. How can we do that? First and foremost, by forbidding smoking and decreasing the number of smokers. Then the alcohol consumption needs to be reduced. Physical exercise performed 3-4 times a week, long walks of over 30 minutes and a balanced diet with fruits and vegetables can act as a defense against cancer types associated with lifestyle and diet. We must not neglect, of course, the sun protection”, recommends the oncologist Ozlem Er.
Those with close relatives who were diagnosed with cancer should be especially careful. A full annual check, in a prestigious clinic, can identify an early-stage cancer.
“If we know there a medical history, we test the patient for genetical mutations and, if the result is positive, then we will test the other family members. In case you want to identify the risk of cancer, without knowing the family history, you can be tested depending on your age and risk category”, adds the expert.
Currently, top oncology clinics such as Acibadem offer patients access to experienced medical teams, sophisticated investigations, latest generation radiotherapy and revolutionary treatments such as immuno-therapy. This proved to be the winning formula for many Romanian patients who chose to be treated in the Acibadem clinics from Turkey.
“Breast or testicles cancer respond the best to this type of treatment, even if the diagnostic is a late one. Even in the case of pancreatic cancer, one of the most difficult ones, we have the possibility of treating the patients. There’s always something we can do after a cancer diagnosis. We can’t guarantee success, of course, but we can increase life span and its quality”, says dr. Ozlem Er.
Oncologists also warn about the myths concerning the diet of cancer patients.
“Cancer patients need proteins from fish, chicken and red meat. But we hear very often patients saying they don’t eat meat at all because otherwise they would feed the cancer cell. They need to know they can eat anything, unless there are diet restrictions imposed by other conditions such as diabetes or cardiovascular diseases. Of course, diet should include vegetables, 5 portions of fruits and vegetables per day being the optimum intake”, recommends the specialist.
Sports, healthy diet, sun protection and hydration with 2 liters of water per day are vital for long term survival of cancer patients. During the first two years after diagnosis, the regular check-ups, every 3 months, are also important. Between 3 to 5 years from treating the cancer, the check-ups are done every 6 months. After 5 years, it is necessary an annual control, because the relapse risk still exists, even if lower.
Acibadem Hospitals Group, the most appreciated private medical services provider from Turkey since 1991, with 22 hospitals and 17 outpatients’ clinics, has just opened a new hospital in Istanbul, Acibadem Altunizade, which includes the most advanced oncology center from the entire country. The thousands of Romanians who become, every year, Acibadem patients, go there especially for this diagnosis, confirmed or feared: cancer.
Acibadem Hospitals Group is the most appreciated provider of private medical services in Turkey since 1991 and is part the international network International Healthcare Holdings, the second medical services chain in the world. Acibadem operates 17 general hospital with full service and 13 clinics. Acibadem provides comprehensive services of diagnosis and treatment by collaborating with the best professionals in medical area, using latest generation medical technology and functioning at licensed medical standards at excellency level. Thousands of Romanians check yearly into the Acibadem hospitals, especially in the oncology, cardiology, fertility, sports medicine and transplant centers.