Cancer (Diseases and Disorders) by Elizabeth Silverthorne

By Elizabeth Silverthorne

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Sample text

Like cigarette smokers, cigar smokers who start early in life and smoke most often are at the greatest risk. Chewing tobacco contains twenty-eight carcinogens. It is sometimes called “spitting” tobacco because people spit out the tobacco juices that combine with saliva and build up in their mouths. In 1986 the surgeon general concluded that the use of smokeless tobacco “is not a safe substitute for smoking ciga- Preventing Cancer 41 rettes. ”6 Secondhand Smoke A person does not have to be a smoker to be at risk for harm caused by tobacco smoke.

Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, Louise was treated with radiation and combination chemotherapy. The chemo was an extremely experimental treatment at the time, as doctors were trying to find a combination that was effective for treating RMS. Three of her teeth were fused to her jawbone by radiation. In the spring of 2008, when she was forty-eight, one of the teeth became infected and had to be pulled. For a short time she was terrified that if anything went wrong she might lose part of her jaw.

Chemotherapy Chemotherapy—treatment with powerful chemicals—has proven to be an effective method of fighting cancer. Chemotherapy can be given in different ways: through a vein (intravenously, or IV), orally, using an injection or shot, or by applying directly to the skin. When the drugs are given by mouth, they are in the form of pills, capsules, or liquid. Needles and syringes are used to give injections either into a muscle, under the skin, or directly into cancerous areas in the skin. The drugs may also be applied to the surface of the skin.

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