Monthly Archives: August 2019

A guide to genetic testing for Hereditary Cancer Diagnosis by cancer specialist in Pune

Genetic Testing for Hereditary Cancer Diagnosis

Genetic testing is conducted to estimate the possibility of developing cancer in your lifetime. These tests help detect mutations in your DNA. If some of your family members or blood relatives were diagnosed with cancer, you become more likely to receive the genes too. Hence, genetic testing informs you whether cancer runs in your family. Genetic testing may help in the following:

  • Predicting the risk of a particular disease
  • Finding out whether your genes pose a cancer risk to your children
  • Provide information to prepare you in advance

Here is an article explaining the importance of genetic testing by ‘Onco Life Cancer Centre’, the preferred cancer specialist in Pune, Kolhapur, Satara, and adjacent regions.

Genetic tests are available only for certain types of cancer such as Breast, Ovarian, Colon, Thyroid, Prostate, Pancreatic, Melanoma, Stomach and kidney cancer. ‘Onco life Cancer Centre’ in Satara is one of the finest testing centres for people looking for a cancer hospital in Pune or nearby regions.

A point to note here is that Genetic tests do not say whether you will get cancer or not. They just tell you how much chance you have of getting cancer. This means, even if you have a 95% genetic chance of inheriting cancer, you can adopt certain preventive measures to avoid letting cancer happen to you.

What are the risk factors of genetic mutation?

An inherited gene mutation can cause cancer to be developed due to heredity from parent to child. The factors which increase the risk of hereditary cancer are as follows:

  • You have many first-degree relatives such as mother, father, sisters, brothers, children with cancer.
  • There is a single gene mutation which is a link to a group of cancer such as breast, ovarian, colorectal, and pancreatic cancers in your family.
  • One or several of the family members have more than one type of cancer.
  • One or several of the family members have had cancer at a very young age.
  • One or several of the family members have a rare type of cancer such as male breast cancer or eye cancer.
  • One or more family members have already had genetic testing that found a mutation.

Why is this test important?

These genetic tests are used as a guide for treating certain cancers. They help to inform a healthcare practitioner as to whether certain targeted cancer drugs may or may not work. Genes are made up of DNA, which is like the code required for the production of certain proteins. Alteration in the DNA, called as polymorphisms or mutations, can occur throughout the population. Mutations can affect all cells but can occur later in life due to exposures to radiation, toxins or any other unknown reasons, resulting in cancer.

In certain types of cancers, there may be a genetic mutation that leads to an increased amount of a particular protein present in the tumor tissue or to the production of a protein that has altered activity. Tumors with these mutations tend to grow and spread more aggressively and are more resistant to chemotherapy too. Genetic tests for cancer therapy detect the mutations, thereby identifying tumors that may be susceptible to targeted therapy. Conversely, genetic tests may also identify tumors that will not respond to targeted therapy.

The benefits of genetic testing

One of the advantages of knowing whether you have a genetic mutation or not is that you can work with your doctor to assess your cancer risks and facilitate preventive oncology. This can help prevent cancer completely or at least find it an early stage when it’s most treatable. This will not just inform you but will also prepare your family for themselves.

To get yourself tested, visit Onco Life Cancer Centre in Satara where the staff consists of the best of experienced cancer specialists, oncologists & hematologist in Pune and Mumbai.

Onco Life Cancer Centre - Preventive Oncology

Preventive Oncology-Taking Stand Against Cancer Risks

The term ‘cancer’ can be really scary, evoking feelings of anxiety and hopelessness in people who come in terms with it. Oncologists across the medical fraternity including the best cancer specialist in Pune and Mumbai, are of the opinion that fear of cancer affects people immensely because they remain oblivious to the early detection cures and most importantly the effective preventive measures available against cancer. Innumerable myths and doubts encircling cancer make it one of the deadliest diseases.

What is Preventive oncology?

Preventive oncology is any measure taken to prevent the development or progression of the malignant process. While cancer prevention concepts, coming under the preventive oncology are still evolving, there are some well-established facts that prove simple lifestyle changes can make all the difference!

  • Say ‘No’ to Tobacco: Usage of any form of tobacco places you on the collision path with cancer. Smoking or chewing of tobacco increases cancer risks of mouth, lungs, colon etc. Chemicals present in tobacco smoke damages the DNA of a body cell. This DNA controls the normal growth and functioning of a cell. So, when DNA is damaged, a cell can begin growing out of control and create a cancer tumor. Here it’s important to point out that secondhand smoke is equally harmful as you are likely to inhale the same amount of harmful chemicals as the smoker, making you prone to lung cancer. Avoid coming in contact with tobacco in any case. Take medical help if required, to quit tobacco as a preventive measure against cancer.
  • Stick to Healthy Diet: Your daily diet contributes significantly towards your health maintenance. While making the right selection at the grocery stores or at meals does not guarantee immunity against cancer, it can definitely go a long way in reducing cancer risks. Some of the basic guidelines suggested by the oncology departments, including the best oncologist in Pune are:
    • Consume plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables
    • Opt for foods sourced from plants like whole grains and beans
    • Avoid using processed vegetable oils
    • Choose lower-calorie foods
    • Add more unsaturated fats from fish, nuts, avocados etc
    • Cut down processed meats etc.
  • Maintain a Healthy Weight and Stay Active: Several medical researchers have drawn parallels between overweight/obesity and cancer risks. People who are overweight have a higher risk of various types of cancers like breast, colon, prostate, lungs and kidney. Hence, keep a check over your body weight. Physical activities too count as a preventive measure against cancer because it helps in weight control. It promotes hormonal balances and develops immune systems that are instrumental in reducing risks related to breast cancer and colon cancer.
  • Avoid Risky Behavior: It is highly recommended to avoid risky behaviors that may cause infections, leading to increased risk of cancer. For instance, it’s very important to limit sex partners and adopt precautions when having sex. Human Papilloma Virus, also known as HPV, is a contagious disease that is increasingly found to be the cause of many types of cancer and it spreads through skin to skin contact during vaginal, anal and oral sex. The Hepatitis B virus (HBV) also spreads from person to person through unprotected sex. It leads to long-term liver infections that can increase a person’s chance of developing liver cancer.
  • Vaccinations can be Effective: Certain types of cancers like cervical cancer and liver cancer are the result of viruses. Vaccines such as HPV and hepatitis B vaccine are given to people to protect their body from cancer-causing viruses. Preventive vaccinations for cancer are given before the virus attacks the body. If you want to know more about these vaccinations, you can consult the oncologists at Onco Life Cancer Centre. They are cancer experts who will guide you in the best interest.

Besides the above pointers, make sure to get regular medical tests and screenings done only at the best hospitals. Go for genetic testing to rule out the chances of developing cancer caused by an inherited gene mutation.

Onco Life Cancer Centre is one of the leading cancer hospitals offering the best services and is equally competent as any other top cancer hospital in Pune and Mumbai. If you want to know more about preventive measures against cancer for yourself or your loved ones, get in touch with us and we will apprise you with all the required info that you will appreciate.