In less than one month Kenya lost three prominent people to cancer. This is a reflection of what is happening on the ground. Each and every day more people succumb to cancer and what’s worse cancer treatments in Kenya is very expensive and only a few hospitals provide the services
Experts have it that, if detected early cancer can be treated. The truth is, cancer screening is quite expensive and given the fact that nearly a third of Kenyans fall below the poverty line, how many people can afford cancer screening?
What is cancer?
For a disease that has consumed lots of lives not only in Kenya but also worldwide, you would be surprised to learn that nearly 80% of Kenyans can’t accurately define what cancer is.
What is cancer?
This is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body. In other words, cancer develops when the normal control mechanism of the body stops functioning. Old cells don’t divide and die but instead outgrow new cells in the process forming a tumor.
Types of cancer
Cancer cells can develop on just any part of the body. In women, breast cancer is the most common whereas in men prostate cancer is.
The following are the common types of cancer:
This type of cancer form on the bones and soft tissues such as muscles, ligaments, tendons, blood and lymph vessels.
This is the most common type of cancer. It develops on the epithelium cells which are the cells covering the inner and outer tissues in the body.
This begins in the blood-forming tissues of the bone marrow. In leukemia, no solid tumors develop instead, an abnormally large number of white blood cells are formed crowing the blood and disrupting the smooth flow of oxygen in the body.
Lymphomas starts in the lymphocytes destroying the white blood cells weakening the body immune system.
5. Brain and spinal cord
This is by far the most serious type of cancer especially given the fact that it affects the central nervous system. In the brain and spinal cord cancer, tumors are formed.
What causes cancer
The main reason why cancer is one the rise in Kenya is due to unhealthy living habits. The following is a list of some of the things that cause cancer:
- Genetically modified foods
- White flour
- Carbonated beverages
- Canned food
- Refined sugar
- Hydrogenated oil
- Grilled red meat
What should be done
Perhaps its time we made cancer a national epidemic. After the recent tragedies there have been movements to spread awareness on cancer but the truth this, this is is still not enough. In my opinion, the government should increase cancer screening centers. Treatments should also be subsidized or made free for the general public.