Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021- Shed Light On The "Forgotten Cancer"
Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021 is observed in the month of July every year. During this month, various events take place, charities work endlessly, and people come together to make a difference in the viewpoint of people regarding sarcoma.
Like every awareness month has its own color, yellow signifies Sarcoma Awareness Month. The theme for Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021 is “Go Yellow Anywhere for Sarcoma Awareness.” It highlights that sarcoma is unique cancer and can spread anywhere in the body. In honor of awareness month, people wear yellow ribbons or tie them everywhere as a reminder to make efforts and spread awareness.
Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021 aims at highlighting the extraordinary challenges that patients have to face so that more and more will come forward to help the survivors. It is a way to create public awareness and stand in solidarity with the sarcoma community to let every survivor enjoy a long and healthy life. The lack of understanding makes celebrating Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021 crucial. To help you participate in the celebration of awareness month, we have penned down this article. Through this article, we would like to provide you with some essential information about sarcoma, which you can use to make yourself and others aware.
Celebrate Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021 because it is rightly said, “Together we can make a difference.” So, join hands, make efforts, and pledge to bring awareness this July.
What Is Sarcoma?
Sarcoma is a rare but deadly kind of cancer that affects connective tissue like fat, blood vessels, muscle, nerve, cartilage, bone, and deep skin. Basically, such tissues can be found anywhere in the body, and hence, sarcoma can arise anywhere. However, it is not prevalent like other common carcinomas. The United States experiences 15,000 new cases every year. Among total diagnosed patients, 50% are men, and 50% are women. This kind of cancer is more likely to affect young children and adults of age under 60 years.
The survival rate of this type of cancer is relatively low, even if they are found in the initial stages. Rhabdomyosarcoma is the most common kind of sarcoma, and it has a five-year survival rate of just 65%. The rate gets reduced to 30% if found after metastasis. This makes it clear that even though sarcoma is not as common as other cancers, it is devastating. Hence, we all should step out of our comfort zone and make all the efforts to spread awareness and help the survivors during Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021.
Sarcoma cancer is of different types based on the area it affects. It is most commonly found in the arms and legs because of the availability of a vast number of connective tissues. Some of the common types of sarcoma are:
1. Soft tissue sarcomas: This form of sarcomas are found in cartilage, blood vessels, fat, muscle, nerves, tendons, and around joints.
2. Ewing sarcomas: This kind of sarcomas is found in bone and soft tissue.
3. Osteosarcomas: It develops in the bone
4. Liposarcomas: It is detected in fat
5. Rhabdomyosarcomas: Develops in the muscles
Symptoms of Sarcoma
This soft tissue is hard to detect because it can grow anywhere in the body. However, knowing the symptoms is of utmost importance. This will help an individual to get the treatment at the right time and make all the efforts to fight against it. Following are some of the common symptoms that patients who are suffering from sarcoma experience.
1. Painless Lump: This is usually the first symptom of sarcoma. Lumps get pressed against nerves or muscles and make a person feel uncomfortable. It also troubles the breathing process.
2. Vision Change
3. Eye Swelling and extensive drooping eyelids
4. Difficulty in swallowing and hoarseness
5. Protruding eyeball
6. Abdominal pain
7. Tenderness or Fatigue
8. Unexplained fever and tiredness
9. Weight loss
There are different treatment options available to cure sarcoma. The choice of treatment depends upon the stage of cancer. The size and grade of the tumor are to be estimated, and it is checked whether cancer has spread to the lymph nodes or other parts of the body (metastasized) or not. After knowing this, the proper treatment is selected. Here are some of the treatment options available for curing sarcoma.
Surgery: This is one of the most common ways of treating sarcoma. With the help of surgery, doctors remove cancer and a safe margin of tissue around the affected area. This method might also require to be combined with radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy before or after the surgery.
Radiation: It is a treatment of sarcoma with high-dose x-rays. This type of treatment is required before the surgery for shrinking the size of the tumor, if needed, or after surgery for killing all the remaining cancer cells from the affected part of the body.
Chemotherapy: This treatment is done with the help of anticancer drugs and is chosen for the same purpose as radiation. Other than that, it is also opted for reducing the pain and discomfort, which helps prevent the spread of cancer to other parts of the body.
Facts about Sarcoma
1. In the total percentage of childhood cancers, rhabdomyosarcoma accounts for 5-8%.
2. 50% of the children diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma survive just five years.
3. Osteosarcoma, one of the kinds of sarcoma, mainly affects children and adolescents under 20 years.
4. About 1% of people who have cancer get diagnosed with sarcoma.
5. The survival rate of bone sarcomas is slightly higher at 66% than soft tissue sarcomas, which have just 50%.
Ways To Spread Awareness During Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021
Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021 is an excellent opportunity to spread awareness about this deadly cancer and help the survivors in some way or the other. There are various ways by which an individual can participate in the celebration of Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021. Below mentioned are some of the ways to get involved in the fight against sarcoma.
Spreading Awareness: This is one of the most common ways to be a part of any awareness event and an important one. Since sarcoma is a rare kind of cancer, the majority of the population is unfamiliar with it. So, this July, take a moment and spread the word about sarcoma. For this, you can use social media platforms, talk to your friends or family members, etc.
Make a donation: In honor of Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021, you can donate to various charities, NGOs, hospitals, or directly to the survivors. This will help those who have this deadly cancer but can’t afford the treatment.
Host webinars: To contribute to this Sarcoma Awareness Month 2021, you can run live online webinars. These webinars are a way of spreading awareness to a mass population. By hosting webinars, you can make a number of people aware whom you can’t meet in person and share your knowledge.
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