Micro Life Zone
Asked by tanisha to DJ, Kyler, Mia, Mick, Peter on 2 Sep 2013. This question was also asked by spodermen.
There are many different cancers and some have treatments which can effectively lead to a cure. Diagnostic techniques are being improved and medications and surgical techniques are often being developed to help cure cancer, but one area also being investigated is prevention. Studies try to understand what causes cancer and how it can be prevented, which would be better than trying to cure it. One example is the Australian invention of a vaccine to prevent HPV, which is a virus that causes certain types of cancer.
We are getting there. When I was your age, cancer meant you would die painfully in a short time. Now most people have treatment and live for a long time.
As David says, we are getting a better understanding of what cancer is and how it works. Treatments are getting better all the time.
Cancer is a horrible thing. But cancer is also a very general name for a big group of problems that happen to behave in a similar way. We can use things like surgery, or radiation and chemical (medications) to slow or stop the growth of cancer.
In some cases like @DJ mentioned, we can completely cure some types of cancer if they are found early enough. Some can be stopped for a long time but never cured for life because we dont know what’s caused the cancer in the first place.
Chemotherapy, which is chemical treatment of cancer, can sometimes be so good now that we can predict how well it will work in different people by looking at their DNA first.
I think the guys have given you really good responses to this great question – sorry I was a bit late getting here!
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