Friday, 11 December 2015

Rabies Treatment and Drugs

Rabies- The 100% Fatal Disease
 Rabies is a 100% fatal viral disease caused by bites of rabid animals. Rabies has global distribution, but countries like Japan, Ireland, UK, Spain, Norway, Portugal, Norway, and Sweden are considered to be free from rabies. It is prevalent in African, South American, some of Asian countries like India, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam and Cambodia.Dog is considered to be the primary vector for rabies transmission.

 Rabies Virus
Rabies virus is a neurotropic virus belonging to the family of rhabdovirus (serotype lyssa virus). This virus is sensitive to heat, ultraviolet radiation and lipid solvents. Drying and cold have very little effect on the virus and the virus can stay alive for a very long time.

Rabies virus can be transmitted to human beings in any of the following ways:

 a.Exposure through bites.
The main transmission of virus to humans is through transdermal bite from an infected animal.99% of cases are due to canines (96% dog bites, 2% due to cats and 1% by any other warm blooded animal which is supposed to be susceptible to this disease and can transmit it). Bites by domestic rats, lizards, birds and hares are not considered to be by rabid animals.
b.Exposure without bites.
This can only happen if there is evidence that mucous membrane or skin has given away or was broken so that there is contact with the saliva of the infected animal even without a bite.
This may occur during organ transplantation.

Local wound (Bite) Management
* Wash the wound with plenty of soap and water.
* Apply antiseptic or alcohol. Apply only povidone iodine, do not use tincture iodine. Ethyl alcohol can also be applied. Don't use carbolic acid and other irritant chemicals.
* Tetanus prophylaxis should be done in every bite case if the patient has had no tetanus prophylaxis in the recent past.

* Do not apply chillies, mustard oil, carbolic acid to the wound.
* Avoid suturing. If suturing is essential, infiltrate with RIG first.
* Do not cover the wound, it should be left open.

When an animal bites a person, the virus gets implanted at the site of bite. It stays their for sometime(eclipse period). The virus then ascends along the motor nerves to reach the spinal cord and the brain; the virus proliferates in the brain and then descends and spreads to other parts of the body like salivary glands, heart, reproductive organs and kidneys.
The following are the stages found:
* Incubation period ; 20 to 90 days
* Prodromal period : 2 to 10 days
* Acute neurological stage : 2 to 10 days
* Coma :0 to 14 days
* Death
Once the symptoms appear, no drug, vaccine or immunoglobulin can help and death is inevitable.

Clinical Findings
Rabies may present as either:
* Furious form (80% cases)
*Dumb (or paralytic) form
In the dumb form, patient presents with ascending paralysis involving the lower limbs, which then spreads to the upper limb and the urinary bladder. The patient may then become hyper-active or hyper-excited as in the furious form. The patient may show features of aerophobia or hydrophobia in both forms. The jaw muscles get paralyzed and the patient may not be able to swallow the secretions. The virus may spread from the salivary to respiratory secretions also. Coma then sets in and the patient dies because of cardio-respiratory arrest
Rabies is very effectively preventable and is the only known disease where vaccination given to an exposed person provides protection. The management is as under:
* wound treatment
* active immunization(vaccine)
* passive immunization (rabies immunoglobulin or anti rabies serum)

Wound Treatment.
Flush the wound with running tap water for at least 10 minutes, also wash with plenty of soap and water. Do not scrub the wound too hard. Suturing should be avoided, at least for 48 hours. In case suturing cannot be avoided, (as in facial bite or profuse bleeding), infiltrate the wound with rabies immunoglobulin and apply minimal sutures to stop the bleeding and approximate the wound edges.

Active Immunization
Currently available vaccines:
* Human Diploid Cell Vaccine (HDCV)
* Purified Chick Embryo Cell Vaccine (PCECV)
* Purified Duck Embryo Cell Vaccine
* Purified Verocell Rabies Vaccine (PVRV)

Passive Immunization
Two types of (RIG) rabies immunoglobulin are available:
* Equine rabies immunoglobulin (ERIG)
* Human rabies immunoglobulin (HRIG)

 Post-Exposure Treatment
 There are 3 categories of exposure:

Class I: This includes licks of animals on healthy skin with no mucous membrane exposure. No treatment is required for these cases. But most often, to allay the patients anxiety and apprehension, one may give 3 doses of tissue culture vaccine if the patient can afford it. Never give nerve tissue vaccine because of its complications.

Class II: Scratches, licks on broken skin where only the epidermis has been breached leaving the dermis intact, come under this category. Tissue culture vaccine or nerve tissue vaccine should be administered in such cases. there is no need for rabies immunoglobulin.

Class III: Any single or multiple transdermal bite, anywhere on the body, including scratches, or licks over mucous membrane are considered class lll exposures.These cases should be treated with both tissue culture vaccine and rabies immunoglobulin.

Standard Post-Exposure Regimen.
Any of the active immunization vaccine is given IM (deltoid) on days 0, 3, 7, 14, 28, 90. The day 90 dose is optional.

Pregnancy and Lactation.
Pregnancy and lactation are not contraindication to tissue culture vaccine(TCV). They are completely safe during pregnancy. If a pregnant women get exposed to rabies, she should be given full anti-rabies vaccination.

If (TCV) has been taken(5 doses) in the past 1 year and the patient is again exposed to a bite, he requires just 2 doses of TCV, on day 0 and day 3- there is no need to give rabies immunoglobulin.

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

How To Lower Your Blood Sugar

A simple way to blunt a meal's blood glucose effect is to add acidic foods to your meals.

For most of us, when our blood glucose shoots up after a large meal, our body can manage it to normal in a few hours with out any hard problem. But people with diabetes have blood glucose levels that stay high most of the time. Even the people those are healthy, high glucose levels after a heavy meal can damage the body , even it never causes diabetes.

Is there any simple component that can be added to the meal that could keep the blood glucose to be raising too high. Yes, it is, acetic acid, the sour tasting substance in vinegar. Studies showed that people who had a heavy packed meal, seems their blood sugar level raised up in an hour. But the same people after having the same meal with a tablespoon of apple vinegar, showed only a 50% cut in blood glucose levels. Same results showed after having vinegar with a chicken and rice meal.

The actual secret is yet to be find out. The researchers know that the vinegar interferes with the enzymes that break apart the chemical bonds in starches and the kinds of sugars found in sugar and milk. So it takes longer time for the body to break down those into blood glucose. Another version is vinegar keeps food in the stomach longer which prevents quick digestion. This may also speed the rate at which glucose is moved out of the bloodstream and into the muscle cells for storage.

Any way the effect is fantastic and we can easily add vinegar to salads and other food, which can be taken with heavy meals. Lemon juice also gives you good control over blood glucose levels.

Tips to lower your blood sugar levels 

  • Cook with wine. It's acidic and gives tasty tang to soups, sauces and roasts.
  • Eat citrus fruits such as oranges and sweet lime.
  • Add lime juice to fish, melon and sweet potatoes.
  • Drinking wine in moderation, a small glass a day for women and up to two glasses for men. This can help keep blood insulin levels low and is linked with a lowered risk of developing diabetes.
  • Use mustard, which is made with vinegar, in place of mayonnaise on sandwiches.
  • Eat a cucumber pickle with your sandwich which is marinated in vinegar.
  • Bake sourdough bread. As the dough ferments, it releases lactic acid. Lactic acid like vinegar has effects too.
  • Squeeze lemon juice over fish and sea food.
  • Have pickled carrots, celery, tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower florets, capsicums made at home.
  • Pickle liquid makes an excellent marinade, especially when mixed with a little olive oil.

 Recipe of veg pickles for diabetics

Place a cup of white vinegar, 4 cups of water, some cloves of garlic, one spoon mustard seeds, some carrots, cut in to small pieces, some mushrooms(whole), salt and pepper as needed, in a large vessel and boil. Once reached boiling point cook for 3-4 minutes. Cool and place it in an airtight bottle. Place it in refrigerator. Have this with egg plant(brinjal), cauliflower, asparagus and green beans.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Is Coconut Oil Good For Health

Coconut oil is always a matter of debate about its benefits and hazards. It has been used as food and medicine from decades. In India it is one of the major used oil both as a cooking oil and also widely used in medicine(in Ayurveda- Indian Herbal Medicine)
Coconut tree is otherwise called Kalp Vriksha- provider of all goodness. Even there is a state in India , Kerala (Keralam)- 'Kera' means coconut and 'alam' means land. It is a main source of cooking oil, household utensils, baskets, furniture, medicines and cosmetics. Coconut is a tall palm grows up to 30-35 meters in height. It has large leaves and leaflets up to one meter long. There are two types of coconut palms, talls and dwarfs. The growth of coconut tree is favored by warm and humid climate. Common names of coconut tree in different languages:
  • English- Coconut tree.
  • Hindi- Nariyal ka pet, Nariyal(coconut).
  • Malayalam- Nalikera, Tengu.
  • Sanskrit- Narikela, Sandaphala, Trinadruma, Dridhaphala.
Even the properties of coconut oil is mentioned in Sushruta Samhita around 2000 years before. Sushruta explains the health benefits of coconut oil as
  • Coconut oil is a natural aphrodisiac

    Coconut Flower
  • It is a natural coolant
  • It is digested slowly
  • It nourishes the body tissues
  • It helps improve the quality and strength of hair and promotes hair growth.

Coconut oil is useful in the treatment of diseases like emaciation, debility, respiratory conditions, diabetes and urinary system disorders. When applied on wounds, it quickens the healing and helps in filling up of skin depression in wounds. Massage using coconut oil not only improves hair growth but also restricts dandruff. Body massage using coconut oil is good for dry skin. Regular use of coconut oil prevents skin diseases.
Tender Coconut

But the modern dietary guidelines categorize coconut oil as a food to be avoided. According to them coconut oil is fatty and will increase the cholesterol level. In state Kerala, coconut oil is used in almost all dishes. If coconut oil is said to increase obesity, then Kerala should have been filled with obese people, which is not the case! Coconut oil is used there as a food ingredient and as a medicine for external application and for internal administration. It is an integral part of Kerala's lifestyle.
Coconut oil is now known to contain a unique form of saturated fat that actually helps prevent heart disease, stroke, and hardening of arteries. The saturated fat in coconut oil is not like the fat found in meat or other vegetable fats. It is identical to a special group of fats found in human breast milk which have been shown to improve digestion, strengthen the immune system, and protect against bacterial, viral and fungal infections.
Mature Coconut
Virgin Coconut Oil(VCO)- is coconut oil that is not refined, bleached or deodorized. Most of the coconut oils found in the market are refined and they are not healthy for intake. Reports and studies shows that regular intake of virgin coconut oil brings increased energy levels, fewer carvings for carbohydrates and sweets, and satisfactions of being full after a meals. The repeated eating habit thus come to an end by itself. So now it is a known fact that the weight loss associated with coconut oil is related to the length of the fatty acid chains(instead of saturated fatty acids coconut oil contains medium chain fatty acids). So virgin coconut oil is unique in nature which the usage will leads to increased metabolism and weight loss.
Coconut oil is used and it is the base for the preparation of many herbal medicines. Some of the common herbal formulations are Karpooradi coconut oil, Eladi coconut oil, Kayyanyadi coconut oil, Dhurdhurapatradi coconut oil and Chemparatyadi coconut oil. Hair oils are often prepared using coconut oil. It is a good skin softener and moisturizer. For a normal healthy person including a small quantity of coconut oil in regular diet will give only health benefits. According to Ayurveda, coconut oil is nourishing in nature when taken internally. Hence it is used in conditions like debility, emaciation etc. It is natural coolant and is found given good results in conditions like eczema.

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Asparagus- Shatavari

Shatavari is one among the herbal plant that must be in your garden. It got lot of medicinal properties and also gives great look for the garden with its white beautiful flowers. Shatavari name means(shat- hundred, vari- husbands) and is considered to be women’s best friend. Shatavari is classified under the family Liliaceae. Its botanical name is Asparagus racemosus. In English it is called 'wild asparagus' and in Sanskrit 'abhiru'. In Hindi it is Satavar or Shatmuli and in Malayalam Shatavali, Satavari.
Shatavari got lot of health benefits like correcting digestion, cooling brain cells, have diuretic properties, increases sperm generation etc. Shatavari is best known as a female rejuvenative. It is also known as the best Ayurvedic medicine for women. Widely used in treating, diarrhea, dyspepsia, nervous disorders, throat infections, inflammations, tumours, tuberculosis, cough, gonorrhea, leucorrhoea, epilepsy, burning sensation, fatigue, hyperacidity and a very effective medicine for antenatal care. It is also an immuno-modulator.
Shatavari root is used as a vegetable and medicine. The young shoots of asparagus are edible and is used for various preparations. They can be eaten as raw salad, boiled or steamed, stir- fried and can be stored long as pickle form. Asparagus roots contain 22 percent protein, 6.2 percent fat, 3.2 percent carbohydrate, 0.36 percent vitamin B, 0.04 percent vitamin C and traces of vitamin A. It contains several alkaloids too.

 Home Remedies

  • Medicated ghee with milk containing wild asparagus improves lactation.
  • Tubers of shatavari boiled in milk is helpful in dysuria(painful urination).
  • Pregnant women are recommended to take medicated milk with wild asparagus as it helps in protecting the fetus in the early stages of pregnancy.
  • Shatavari root powder is a great tonic and can be used as a health drink regularly.
  • Useful in cases of hyperacidity, bronchitis and chronic fevers.
  • Shatavari is quite effective in stomach ulcers and diarrhea.

 Shatavari in Ayurveda

Ayurveda classifies shatavari as:
Guna: Guru(heavy) and snigdh(slimy)
Rasa: Tikta(bitter) and madhur(sweet)
Virya: Sheet(cold)
Ayurveda uses wild asparagus in treating dyspepsia and it improve digestion by increasing the levels of enzymes amylase and lipase. Extract of shatavari is very effective in production of milk in lactating mothers. This effect is due to the action of released corticosteroids or an increase in prolactin. In India shatavari is the best and most used herb for women. Used for infertility, loss of libido, threatened miscarriage and widely used for relieving the menopausal problems such as hot flashes. It both nourishes and cleanses the blood and the female reproductive organs. Shatavari is effective in men as it is used in cases of impotence, sexual debility and inflammation of sexual organs.
Some of the Ayurvedic medications that contain shatavari as the main ingredient are: Shatavari ghritam, shatavaryadi kashayam, shatavari gulam, saraswatharishtam, mahanarayanatailam, asoka ghritam, chandanasavam, etc...

 Recipe with Asparagus

Asparagus with split pea and saffron.
Ingredients: 1 medium onion (diced), 2 table spoon olive oil, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds, 1/2 tsp curry powder, 5-7 curry leaves, 1/8 tsp saffron(if you can find them), 1 tsp salt, 11/2 cups dry split peas, 4 cups water, 1 lb asparagus, blanched, 15 1/4 ozcorn.
Roast saffron in large deep frying pan about 2 minutes. Add olive oil, cumin, fenugreek and curry leaves. Cook until seeds sizzle.
Add onion, a pinch of asafaetida, curry powder and saute until onion is soft(about 5 minutes)
Add split peas, salt and water. Bring to a boil, cover, turn heat to low and cook until peas are soft(about 40 minutes)
Add asparagus and corn, stir and cook for another 10 minutes and serve.

 Shatavari side effects

  • Some allergic reactions are reported as seen in persons who are allergic to asparagus.
  • Use is restricted in women having estrogen effected disorders.
  • Not advised for pregnant women.
  • Nervousness, dizziness, stomach ache are also reported as side effects of shatavari.
  • Regular use can cause weight gain.
  • Breast softness and premenstrual stress are also reported as side effects of this herb.
  • Shatavari is not advised for those having impaired heart function.
Any way treatment with shatavari is to be done under the control of a qualified medical practitioner.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Can Stress Cause Infertility

Infertility is a term used for women who are not able to get pregnant and men who are unable to make a woman pregnant, after at least one year of trying. Women can also called infertile, if they are able to get pregnant but cannot carry an embryo to birth. World fertility rates are increasing year by year. The causes of infertility can be many. It can be an unknown factor or combination of factors. The problem can be in women or in men. Sometimes both have the problem due to various reasons. In some cases, genetic conditions, environmental factors and other health problems cause infertility. Infertility has been growing by 12%-17% every year.

 Infertility in Men.

 Male infertility can result from physical problems like lack of enough normal sperms in testes for reproduction, hormonal problems, lifestyle and environmental factors like stress, age, exposure of testes to high temperatures, wearing tight underwear, smoking, alcohol consumption, certain medications, environmental toxins and genetic conditions.

 Infertility in Women.

In women problems with ovulation is one of the main causes of infertility. Premature ovarian failure and Polycystic ovary syndrome(PCOS) are the common reasons affecting ovulation. In premature ovarian failure the ovaries stop functioning before natural menopause and in PCOS, the ovaries may not release egg regularly or may not release a viable healthy egg. In women who got PCOS, even when a healthy egg is released and fertilized, the uterus may reject the implantation of the fertilized egg, resulting in infertility. Pelvic inflammatory disease, blocked fallopian tubes due to endometriosis, or surgery, physical problems with the uterine wall and uterine fibroids can also result in infertility.
Age is also a growing cause of infertility in women. Most of them are getting married in their 30's. As age increases the woman's ovaries become less able to release eggs and the eggs become less healthier. The chances of miscarriage also increases with age.
Lifestyle and environmental factors like stress, poor diet, obesity or underweight, smoking, drugs, alcohol, certain medications, genetic conditions and other sexually related diseases can also play a leading role in women infertility.

 Is There a Connection Between Stress and Infertility?

There are various studies going on to find out the effects of stress on male and female infertility. The researches in men and women, who are experiencing stress continuously from various fields like working stress, family stress etc showed similar results. The men are found to had some type of sperm deficiency(like less sperm count and motility) and in women undergoing pregnancy treatment and experiencing lot of stress had less amount of fertilized eggs than women with less stress.
Lot of theories are existing about the impact of stress on male and female fertility. If people are experiencing stress, then the chance of starting bad habits like smoking, alcohol, drugs, poor eating habits etc are high. These bad habits got clear effects on the fertility levels. Even high stress levels can cause irregular menstruation and suppression of menstrual cycle. Any way the relationship between stress and infertility is still poorly understood.

 Effective Ways to Treat Infertility.

Medication and surgery are the most common ways of treating infertility. Artificial insemination and Assisted Reproductive Technologies are also popular now a days.
Artificial insemination is achieved by injecting in woman carefully prepared sperm from the husband, partner or donor and is the most effective way to treat infertility.
ART(Assisted Reproductive Technologies) This is a new option were a group of different methods are used to treat infertile couple. In this an egg has been taken from woman's body and are put in a dish along with man's sperm under lab conditions for fertilization. After some days the healthy embryos obtained are implanted in the women's uterus.
In Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) is another type of ART and is used in couple who got problems with sperm. Here a single sperm is injected into a mature egg and the embryo is then implanted into the uterus.

 Does stress cause Infertility?

 Does infertility cause stress or does stress cause infertility? The relation between them is really a complex one. Please share your valuable opinion on comment section.

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

How To Keep Your Body Clean and Fresh

How to keep your body clean and fresh, probably most of us don't know how important it is! For most of the people cleaning the body means undergoing some kind of cleansing procedures like Panchakarma therapy(Ayurvedic cleaning procedures). Of course, this is a great way to clean the body and mind, but you can do regular cleansing in your daily life as well.

What do you mean by detoxification is, eliminating the toxins that are accumulated in our bodies as a result of things we eat or encounter. Our bodies are always trying to eliminate these toxins through our breathe, and waste elimination. But because of our lifestyle and bad eating habits, a small amount of toxins are actually been removed out.

We can help our bodies cleaning process become stronger by following certain measures. If you follow this routine, cleansing diet or detoxification diet, you can eliminate or at least greatly reduce the number of toxin-creating substances from your diet.

Eliminate meat and processed foods.

If it is hard for you to completely avoid meat then try to use it as minimum, as having meat at only one meal. For non-vegetarians it is a good idea to have meat only three or four times a week, so that the body gets enough time to clean out all the toxins that are created as byproducts of meat breakdown. Processed foods
are usually going through chemical processes to increase taste, lifespan etc. Chocolates, biscuits, cheeses, frozen foods, pizzas, fizzy drinks, anything in the can are examples of processed foods. Keeping away these things for some days means you are not adding more chemicals into your body, and there by giving a chance to clean the old stock from the body.

 Eliminate alcohol, coffee and tobacco.
 This might me a difficult task for people who are addicted to nicotine and caffeine. It is better to completely stop for some days(detox diet days). But if you are not able to do that, then at least cut it down to minimum.
You have to fix a number of cigarettes a day and have to stick to it. The first day will the most hardest and believe me the second is a bit better. I know it very well as i quit it four years back. Try not to have smoke, or coffee or alcohol for these days.

  Eliminate white flour and sugar.

 This means use wheat products rather than maida and stay away from bakery products like pastries, cakes etc. Try to reduce the amount of sugar you put in your tea/coffee, sweets and packed fruit juices for some days. Be more aware while choosing things that do not have white flour or sugar.

 Add fiber and water.

 Intake of lot of fiber for these days will help the detox process, as a lot of toxins will be moving out through your large intestine. Lot of fluid intake(2-3 liters every day) will also help to wash out toxins. So helping the waste elimination from the body will be a big boost and is the key to a successful detox process. Eat more fruits like pineapple, guava and watermelon. Other sources good in fiber are lentils, chickpeas, most vegetables, wholewheat bread etc.


 Regular exercise will help to improve blood circulation and all internal processes will be more active. This will helps the detox to happen more better. So do aerobic exercises, walk for 30 minutes, swim etc. Any exercise can be taken in to account, if it is done for at least half an hour.

 Sleep well.

Try to go to bed by 10 p.m for some days. You know the maximum amount of detoxification, healing and regeneration of cells happen when we sleep.So it is necessary to sleep at least 8 hours. It is important to sleep and wake at the same time every day. Try to do it for some days and is a simple, practical cleanse. Always watch the the changes you feel at the end of the day and when you wake up. So pay attention to what your body is telling you about it feels before, during and after the detox. Slowly try to bring these days of detox in to your daily routine. The main thing to remember is only you can help you and nobody else. So start it today itself to help cleanse your body and have a healthy life, good luck.

Friday, 26 June 2015

Cancer Challenges

Cancer is one of the leading cause of death in many countries and is accounted for about 65 million deaths worldwide. It occurs in most animals, many kinds of plants and human beings. It occurs equally in men and women and can attack any part of the body. Most of them are fatal without proper treatment.

In order of frequency, the 5 major type of cancer that kills

men:cancer of lung, stomach, liver, colorectal and esophagus                       

women:cancer of breast, lung, stomach, colorectal and cervical.

Cancer is a generic term used for a large group of diseases that can affect any part of the body. Malignant tumors and neoplasms are the other terms used for cancer. One special feature of cancer is the rapid growth of abnormal cells that grow beyond their usual boundaries. These cells can then invade neighboring parts of the body and even travel to other organs, causing secondary growths or tumors- metastasis.

Carcinoma: Cancer of epithelial tissue, affects the skin and the linings of the internal organs.

Sarcoma: Cancer of the connective tissue, such as cartilage, muscle and bone.

Leukemia & Lymphoma: fluid cancer that affects the blood stream and the lymphatic system.
The 3 main methods of treating cancer include surgery, radiation therapy and drug therapy or chemotherapy. In several cases, treatment may be the combination of 2 or even 3 methods and is called combination therapy.

One third of cancers could be cured if detected early and treated properly. All patients in need of pain relief from cancer could be helped if current knowledge about pain control and palliative care were applied. About 30-35% of cancers can be prevented by not using tobacco, having a healthy diet, being physically active and preventing infections that may cause cancer.

With the advent of genomics (the branch of genetics that studies organisms in terms of their full DNA sequences), biologists are starting to learn why cancer is such a wily foe. To begin with, it is necessary to to realize the mutations that can turn cells cancerous and drive a tumor's growth take place in many diverse ways. It is this enormous diversity of mutations that gives these cancerous cells endless opportunities to outwit our defense mechanisms. Hence, by tracking these mutations, and targeting each of them with suitable drugs, we may able to bring cancer under control. It may be even possible to harness the human immune system, which is capable of mounting its own targeted responses, to keep the tumors in check.
Now biologists have been collecting new information about the molecular pathways that drive cancer. Once we throw away the notion that cancer is an automatically defined disease and focus on the molecular abnormalities. the entire perception and approach for treating cancer changes. Conventional radiotherapy and chemotherapy work by being extremely toxic to dividing cells. While these treatments damage the fast growing tumor cells, they also have an adverse effect elsewhere in the body. The current trend is to get away from this model and understand the changes that occur in cancer that differentiate it from normal cells. Treatments may probably require cocktails of targeted drugs that will have to be adjusted as tumors mutate.
This new perspective has provided fertile ground for the growth of new classes of cancer therapies. Drugs like Avastin inhibit the formation of new blood vessels around cancer cells starving them of nourishment. Signal blockers like Everolimus interrupt communication among enzymes that regulate growth and development of a cancerous cell. Hormone blockers like Tamoxifen, useful in certain types of breast cancer, keep cells from dividing by binding to estrogen(general term for female sex hormones) receptors. Growth-factor inhibitors like Herceptin block a cancer cell's link to crucial proteins that help it divide and grow. A certain number of patients do not respond to any of the current treatments. Some types of cancer, like, pancreatic, ovarian and stomach, continue to have high mortality rate . Side effects, however, remain an issue, despite the ant-nausea medications now being very good. However, none of these advances mean that living with cancer is easy.