Ajay Devraj, was a young 12 year old boy full of energy and life. Would always run, jump and hop, ready to attend to all the chores assigned by his mother. One day he started having shooting pain in his left leg. Did not give much thought to it and continued with his daily routine, parents also did not suspect as he such a lively boy. On a fine morning his mother noticed a swelling in the leg and was brought to the hospital. After a few tests Ajay’s family was dumbfounded with the diagnoses that he had bone-cancer. The first option was amputation another alternative was to undergo a medical procedure with which the leg could be saved but would be a very painful experience. Ajay told his parents that he would brave the painful experience to save his leg. Ajay says he never knew what exactly cancer was he had only heard the name. His family were depressed he hear about amputation. When he saw other cancer patients in the hospital he was determined to take the treatment bravely. Ajay decided never to give up. A mere boy with so much of positivity is rare to find.
The treatment would take one whole year, they were ready. 8 Chemotherapies and surgery were done. During the treatment Ajay lost his hair and weight and underwent severe pain but, the brave boy that he was faced it all with a smile. Every sitting with was a pleasure and hope that positive he was. He was supported by his family and friends. The treatment completed in eight months.
Ajay completed his studies, he is an Engineer today. He travels a lot and everywhere possible at railway, bus stations, visits schools, colleges and attends schools summer camps speaks to them about his journey of bone cancer and that it is curable. Keeping his health in check, meets us regularly, follows our advice meticulously goes to a gym. His diet is home-made food and protein-rich diet. Ajay is an inspirational speaker to kids and adults alike.
BONE CANCER AWARENESS
July is Bone-Cancer awareness month. The logo designed for bone cancer is yellow ribbon with a white background. We appeal to everyone and the survivors to join us and to fight strong to highlight on the disease to the general public that it is curable. During this month we can discuss about the causes, symptoms, types and treatment levels about bone cancer.
WHAT IS BONE-CANCER?
Bone cancer is an uncontrolled multiplication of bone cells, which cannot be regulated by the body defense mechanism. The cancer cells become non-functional. But still bone cancers are very rare, accounting to 0.5% of all malignancies. It can begin in any bone in the body, commonly affects the pelvis or long bones in the arms and legs.
SYMPTOMS OF BONE CANCER:
Signs and symptoms are.
- Bone pain
- The affected area becomes tender and swollen
- The bone turns weak and can lead to a fracture.
- You can get tired fast and there may be a weight loss also.
If the pain comes and goes, becomes worse in the nights and the pain does not subside with pain killers come to us immediately.
CAUSES OF BONE CANCER:
The cause of most of the bone-cancers is unknown. It can be hereditary or you might have got exposed to radiation earlier.
- Genetic Syndromes
- Other Cancers
- Paget’s Disease
- Radiation Exposure
TYPES OF BONE-CANCER and TREATMENT:
Based on the type of cell where the cancer began the type is decided. They are:
1. OSTESARCOMA: This is the most common type of bone cancer. Cancerous cells produce bone in the tumor. This type of cancer occurs mostly in children and young adults, in the bones of the leg and arm. Rarely the cancer can develop outside the bone.
TREATMENT: For this the treatment is Neo adjuvant Chemotherapy, followed by Surgery. Radiation Therapy is rarely done.
2. CHONDROSARCOMA: Generally occurs in the pelvis, legs or arms in middle-aged and older adults. It is the second most common bone-cancer.
TREATMENT: Surgery, Radiation Therapy if needed.
3. EWING SARCOMA: This cancer occurs in the pelvis, legs or arms of children and young adults.
TREATMENT: Surgery is done. If surgery is not possible Radiation Therapy is preferred. Then a wide variety of drugs are used in Chemotherapy.
JULY –BONE CANCER AWARENESS MONTH:
During this month there are many ways in which you can support the patients. You can become an advocate for cancer research you can participate in events organized in this month by various organizations to spread about bone cancer, its causes, diagnoses and treatment. Leisure time can be used for this noble cause and if you are a survivor of bone-cancer share your story with us, patients and the general public. A fund-raising campaign can be conducted and help those who cannot afford the treatment. We as doctors are doing our bit by granting concessions in the treatment and also treating without charging.
This July Bone-Cancer Awareness month apart from raising awareness about the disease, raising funds highlights from our 2017-2022 strategy is going to be showcased. All the cases treated so far and which were successful were mainly because of the committed bone-cancer community, parents, friends’ encouragement and the positive and determination of the patients made it possible to emerge out successful.
- This July educate yourself that bone-cancer not only develops in a cell found in the bone but also can be found in long bones-such as the thighs or shin bone.
- Symptoms can vary depending on the location and the size of the tumor.
- You can wear orange T-shirts on any day in July to bring about an awareness of bone-cancer.
- There are umpteen ways to bring awareness at school, work place by going orange.
- Take it up as a challenge, chalk out your program, we are they to help if you approach us doctors and the medical fraternity.
- By educating others you can make a huge difference to those who are affected with bone-cancer.
- Share your own experiences of bone cancer as a survivor with the hash tag #Bone Cancer Awareness.
- Join, write articles and visit web pages to educate others and yourself about Bone-Cancer.