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HealthFocused

Educational health information to improve your well-being.

Posts in Cancer

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Feeling Safe: A Cancer Patient's Experience During COVID-19

July 23, 2020

Leon Bernard proudly 'rang the bell' in Augusta Health's Cancer Center on July 14, signifying that he had just completed his final radiation treatment. He began treatment on May 20. During the entire course of his radiation, COVID-19 was an active and spreading disease within the community—one that was of particular concern to cancer patients with vulnerable immune systems. Cancer did not pause for COVID-19, and neither did cancer treatment at the Augusta Health Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders. Mr. Bernard, however, always felt secure inside the Cancer Center and appreciated all the...Continue Reading

Doctor checking a man's neck for abnormalities

The Often Overlooked Warning Signs of Thyroid Cancer

July 22, 2020

The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2020, approximately 52,890 new cases of thyroid cancer will be diagnosed and that there will be approximately 2,180 deaths from thyroid cancer. While most thyroid cancer is found by accident, there are warning signs you should be aware of for a better chance of early detection. Pay Attention to the Signs Thyroid cancer is commonly diagnosed at a younger age than most other adult cancers. Women are three times more likely to develop thyroid cancer than men. Below are several overlooked signs of thyroid cancer. Lump in the neck: About 90 percent of...Continue Reading

Cancer Center staff checking in patients at their car

Caring for Patients with Cancer during the COVID-19 Pandemic

April 28, 2020

It's been said that cancer does not discriminate. It does not matter your age, gender or social status: anyone can become a cancer patient. COVID-19 does not discriminate either. But if the two would intersect—if a cancer patient would also contract COVID-19—the outcome could be very serious. Like patients with other chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, those with cancer are at a higher risk for developing severe complications with COVID. Additionally, cancer patients on chemotherapy can be immunocompromised, which means their white blood cell counts are low or not well-...Continue Reading

Woman holding her hand up to refuse a cigarette

Quit Smoking to Boost Your Immune System

April 10, 2020

It's always a good time to stop smoking, but the current COVID-19 outbreak adds an even greater sense of urgency. COVID-19 is a lung disease, and for those who become seriously ill or die from it, respiratory failure or significant lung damage is common. The lungs are most susceptible to the virus and the cascade of events that follow a viral infection of the lungs. Smoking harms the immune system and makes the body less successful at fighting lung diseases. But, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are a number of ways that lung health can improve in just days...Continue Reading

Daughter hugging her senior mother

Know the Early Symptoms of Colorectal Cancer

March 12, 2020

According to the American Cancer Society, colorectal cancer, or cancer of the colon and/or rectum, is the leading cause of cancer death for men and women. However, over the last decade, medical advancements have helped to decrease the number of people that die each year from colorectal cancer. The good news is that when caught early, colorectal cancer can often be effectively treated and does not become a death sentence. The challenge is that many people ignore the early warning signs and delay medical screenings that could save their life. When it comes to colorectal cancer, knowledge is...Continue Reading

A woman in pain, pressing on her neck

The 5 Most Commonly Overlooked Cancer Warning Signs

March 10, 2020

When you think of cancer, likely the first symptoms that come to mind are suspicious lumps and growing skin lesions. These are the most well-known signs of a cancerous growth, but they’re not your only warning. Pay attention if your body isn’t feeling quite right. Many early symptoms of cancer could also be caused by other issues and are easy to shrug off, but don’t ignore them. Some symptoms that are commonly overlooked could help you catch cancer earlier! Make an appointment with your doctor if you have problems with any of these five commonly overlooked warning signs of cancer: Fatigue It’...Continue Reading

Three friends smiling

Empower Yourself with these Facts about Cervical Cancer

January 21, 2020

January is recognized as Cervical Cancer Awareness Month. Across the country, organizations like the National Cervical Cancer Coalition ( NCCC ) and the American Sexual Health Association ( ASHA ) seek to raise awareness regarding the causes, risks, and preventable measures surrounding cervical cancer. Here’s a quick rundown of important facts to know about cervical cancer, and the virus most often at its source: HPV is the leading cause of cervical cancer The American Cancer Society, estimated 13,750 women would be diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2019 . The majority of these cases will be...Continue Reading

woman sitting on a park bench

What to Know Before your Cervical Cancer Screening

January 9, 2020

January is Cervical Cancer Awareness month, and there’s a reason it’s so early in the calendar. Unlike many other cancers, cervical cancers are difficult to detect. Whereas some cancers begin to produce symptoms in the earliest stages, cervical cancer earned its reputation as a “silent killer” by holding back on exhibiting symptoms until later on in its incubation. Fortunately, the ability to screen for cervical cancer does allow women an opportunity to detect the disease far earlier than they would be able to in waiting for symptoms to rise to the surface. Here, we hope to illuminate some of...Continue Reading

Closeup of woman wearing a pink ribbon on her chest

Busting the Top 4 Mammogram Myths

January 7, 2020

If you're like most women, you may have some fear about getting a mammogram. However, this annual screening is nothing to fear and could ultimately save your life. Many myths surround the mammogram process, but we're here to set the record straight. Remember, knowledge is power when it comes to staying in good health. Myth #1 I don't have any symptoms of breast cancer or a family history, so I don't need to worry about having an annual mammogram. Fact: The American College of Radiation recommends annual screening mammograms for all women over the age of 40, regardless of symptoms or family...Continue Reading

Closeup of a doctor holding a stethoscope up

Powerful Health Screenings That Could Save Your Life

December 10, 2019

We likely have all heard the familiar old proverb, "A stitch in time saves nine." Although usually, it refers to fixing a problem like a frayed sleeve or a leaky sink, it makes a lot of sense for your health too! To rephrase the proverb: "a screen in time saves lives." Detecting potentially life-threatening conditions before they can advance (and sometimes, before there are even any noticeable symptoms) gives doctors a chance to prevent damage and possibly even eliminate the disease entirely. Health screenings are a powerful tool that can save the lives of at-risk patients. What to Watch For...Continue Reading

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