How COVID-19 Vaccine Affects Cancer Patients

How COVID-19 Vaccine Affects Cancer Patients

Since the beginning of March 2020, COVID-19 has been affecting the lives of millions. 13.1 million people have been affected in India alone. With millions of people getting COVID-19, cancer patients and those in recovery are one of the worst affected groups by the immunodeficiency virus.

COVID-19 Vaccine

While the fear of COVID-19 was multiplying, the scientists worked tirelessly and developed vaccination or immunization against the virus. 

COVID-19 Vaccine and Cancer Patients

People with cancer fall in the priority group of people with certain high-risk medical conditions.

Experts and medical groups recommend that people suffering from dangerous diseases such as cancer should get the vaccine, as soon as it is available to them. But, when it comes to the effectiveness of the vaccine, people with weakened immune systems might be on the shorter end of the stick.

There is no solid research on the effectiveness of the vaccine on cancer patients, or patients who have gone through chemotherapy, bone marrow transplant, or immunotherapy. Before getting vaccinated, always consult a cancer specialist.

Even with the lack of research and trials, experts suggest that getting vaccinated is a better option than not getting vaccinated at all. It is better to be partially immune to the virus than not have any immunity at all against the virus. Experts recommend that most cancer patients should get vaccinated as they are already immune-deficient making them vulnerable to the virus.

COVID vaccine and hematological cancer

Vaccine against COVID-19 has two doses. Research suggests that the first dose has 13% efficacy on hematological cancer patients while 39% efficacy on solid cancer patients.

According to this research, for all hematological patients, the second dose of the vaccine on the 21st day is crucial. The second dose of vaccine develops antibodies against the virus for hematological cancer patients. 

COVID-19 vaccine and breast cancer

COVID-19 vaccine may have side effects which include pain, redness, fever, chills, and nausea. For some people, the side effects can also include swelling of the lymph nodes under the injection site. As swollen lymph nodes are a sign of breast cancer, it is best to visit a doctor if it lasts for more than a week or two. 

For people who have breast cancer or have a history of breast cancer, it is suitable to get injected on the other side of the cancer-affected area. In case, recoverers were affected by cancer in both the breasts, please consult your oncologist before getting vaccinated.

Everyone has a different response to the vaccine. So, it’s best for cancer patients to consult their oncologist before and after getting vaccinated for the best results. 

Dr. S.K Gupta, the founder of Hematology BMT Institute International, is an oncologist and hematologist with 15 years of experience. He is among the best oncologists in India with experience in crucial cases of cancer and rare diseases. In case of queries regarding cancer and COVID-19 vaccine, you can consult him at Hematology BMT Institute International, Hyderabad, or Email: drguptahematologycare @gmail.com

 

What is Blood Cancer

What you need to know about Blood Cancer

What is blood cancer?

When cancer starts developing in the blood-forming tissues, it can lead to blood cancer. Blood forming issues red blood cells, white blood cells, plasma, and even bone marrow. When the growth of abnormal blood cells blows out of proportion in the body, it can hamper the functionality of blood cells. Blood cancer starts with the reduction in the production of infection-fighting cells and even new blood cells. Most of the blood cancers are hematologic cancers which means it starts in the bone marrow and eventually spreads in the body.

India gets approximately 8 Lakhs of new cancer cases every year. Out of which 70,000-80,000 are blood cancer cases. India reports 3rd highest cases of blood cancer every year after the US and China.

Types of Blood Cancer?

There are two main verticals of blood cancer. However, these three can be further subcategorized. 

  1. Leukemia:

    A type of blood cancer that originates in a person’s bone marrow and blood. This is the most common type of blood cancer. When the body starts creating more abnormal white blood cells than required, it starts interfering with the ability of the bone marrow to generate red blood cells and platelets.

  2. i) Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma:

    This type of blood cancer starts developing from cells called lymphocytes in the lymphatic system. Lymphocytes are a subset of white blood cells that helps the human body fight external and internal infections.

    ii) Hodgkin Lymphoma:

    Hodgkin Lymphoma is caused when the lymphatic system starts producing abnormal lymphocytes called Reed-Sternberg cells.

Causes of Blood Cancer

While there are no proven specifics on the cause of blood cancer, there are some definite factors that play a huge role:

  1. Alcohol:

    Occasional drinking does not hamper your health. But excessive consumption of alcohol can make your immune system weak. It can also obstruct the production of new cells in the bone marrow. 

  2. Tobacco:

    Tobacco is a cancer-causing element. Intake of tobacco in any form can cause cancer. Tobacco weakens the immune system and can alter the person’s DNA making them susceptible to a number of diseases and cancers.

  3. Genetic:

    If you have a family history of hematological diseases, you are prone to blood cancer.

Symptoms of Blood Cancer

Blood cancer patients can have the following symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Headaches
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Rashes on Skin
  • Itchy skin
  • Night sweats
  • Bone/joint pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Sudden unexplained weight loss
  • Frequent infections
  • Swelling in lymph nodes of the neck, underarms, or groin

Treatment of Blood Cancer

Treatment of blood cancer can depend on several factors. It majorly depends on age, speed of the cancer development, location of cancer, and the type of cancer. However, there are some commonly followed treatments.

  1. Stem Cell Transplant:

    Stem cells are present in the umbilical cord, bone marrow, and circulating blood. In stem cell transplants, healthy blood-forming stem cells are extracted from the donor and infused in the patient’s blood. 

  2. Chemotherapy:

    Chemotherapy is one of the most common treatments of cancer. This includes introducing anticancer drugs in the body to halt the development of cancerous cells. In some cases, chemotherapy is required after the stem cell transplant.

  3. Radiation Therapy:

    Radiations are used to destroy cancer cells. Radiation therapy can also be done for relieving pain relief of the patients. At times, radiation therapy is done before stem cell transplants.

Blood Cancer falls under the Hematology department. Dr. S.K Gupta at Hematology and BMT Institute International is one of the best hematologists in India. His expertise and knowledge in blood, bone marrow-related disorders are unmatched. He possesses experience of 15 years and believes timely diagnosis, proper guidance, and effective treatment are the foundations of the battle with blood cancer.

Hematology and BMT Institute International is well known in India. The team of experts specializes in hematology or blood-related diseases. The clinic is located in Hyderabad and envisions accessible and reliable medical treatments.

Cancer in Women

Types of Cancers That Affect Women

This Women’s Day, we focus on women’s health & the ways we can improve it.

 

It has been proven that cancer affects women less frequently when compared to men. In recent trends, women have survived the disease more than men. Yet, one in every three women will be diagnosed with cancer at least once in their lifetime, according to the National Cancer Institute.

A number of cancers are specific to women. Ovarian cancer, breast cancer, and cervical cancer are just to name a few. The majority of women do not have knowledge about these cancers and hence are oblivious of the diseases that can be fatal to their lives. Knowledge and awareness about these life-threatening diseases is the first step to conquer the fight against cancer.

 

Ovarian Cancer:

Overview: Ovarian cancer derives its name from ovaries – a female organ that produces eggs for reproduction. The disease starts at the ovaries which can later spread to the rest of the body. This cancer usually goes undetected until it has spread within the pelvis and stomach. It is extremely fatal at this stage.

Who can get it: Ovarian cancer can occur at any stage of life but older women are more likely to get it. Women with a family history of hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC or Lynch Syndrome), breast cancer, ovarian cancer are at an increased risk. However, women who do not fulfill any of these criteria can also get ovarian cancer.

When to see a doctor: Though there is no specific screening for ovarian cancer, women who have the following symptoms for more than a few weeks should get in touch with a medical oncologist.

Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer:

  1. Abdominal swelling with weight loss
  2. Digestive problems
  3. Pelvic/ Abdominal pain
  4. Need to urinate all the time.

Cervical Cancer:

Overview: A malignant tumor in the cervix – the lowermost part of the uterus is called cervical cancer. Human papillomavirus (HPV) can cause chronic infections which is one of the major risks that can lead to cervical cancer. 

Who can get it: All women are at risk of cervical cancer. However, women above the age of 30 are more susceptible to it.

When to see a doctor: In case you notice any of the below symptoms, it is advisable to visit the doctor.

Symptoms of Cervical Cancer:

  1. Bleeding in between menstruation cycles
  2. Bleeding after sexual intercourse. 

For preventing cervical cancer, it is suggested for women to get the complete dose of HPV vaccine shots. Hematology BMT Institute International vaccinates children and adults against HPV.  


Endometrial cancer

Overview: Cancer in the inner lining of the uterus or endometrium is known as endometrial cancer. 

Who can get it: As women get older the risk of the disease increases. Teens with early onset of periods, women with delayed menopause, and family history of infertility can multiply the risks. A family history of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), obesity, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC or Lynch syndrome) is also add-on risks.

When to visit a doctor: See a doctor, if you notice any of the below symptoms, it is advisable to visit the doctor.


Symptoms of Endometrial Cancer:

  1. Abnormal vaginal bleeding or discharge.
  2. Vaginal discharge ranging from pink to thick, brown, water, and foul-smelling.
  3. Painful urination.
  4. An enlarged uterus, detectable during a pelvic exam.

Breast Cancer

Overview: The cancer of the breasts is known as breast cancer. 

Who can get it: It is the most common cancer in women after skin cancer. Although it can occur at any stage, the risks increase as women get older. Women with uterine myoma are more susceptible to breast cancer.

Women should go for regular screenings like mammograms and should generally know how their breasts look and feel. Any changes that are witnessed should be directly reported to the oncologists for early detection.

When to see a doctor: Women can perform a self-exam for checking breast cancer. If any of the following symptoms are seen, it is recommended to check with your doctor:

Symptoms of Breast Cancer:

  1. Dimpling, puckering, or bulging of the skin
  2. A nipple that has changed position or an inverted nipple (pushed inward instead of sticking out)
  3. Redness, soreness, rash, or swelling
  4. Lumps in your breasts

Due to the anatomy of a female body, women are more susceptible to a number of diseases, and when it comes to breast, endometrial, cervical, ovarian cancer, even more so. Regular screening and self-examination can save women the hassle of going through life-threatening medical conditions. 

Dr. S.K. Gupta, founder of Hematology BMT Institute International insists, “regular screening can avoid huge risks. Women should know that the most reliable way to detect  cancer early on is regular screening.” 

While all cancers cannot be prevented, we can surely focus on lowering the risks by taking necessary precautions and getting vaccinated. A cancer-free world is not a far-fetched dream with adequate cancer awareness and alertness. 

World Cancer Day

The World Against Cancer

4th February is marked as World Cancer Day. World Cancer day targets the awareness, prevention, and treatment of cancer, led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC). The day’s primary goal is to show support to cancer-victims, survivors and reduce stigma. 

2021 marks the end of the “I am and I will” initiative to counter false information and counter negative attitudes towards the victim. The campaign’s goal is to debunk the myth that nothing can be done about cancer. The initiative explores how personal growth, individual actions can collectively impact the fatalistic belief.

 

What is cancer?

Cancer is a disease in which uncontrollable cell growth becomes fatal. It has the potential to grow and invade other parts of the body. Cancer is also known as a malignant tumor. 

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the world, next to cardiovascular diseases. Globally speaking, one in every six deaths is caused by cancer. According to WHO, cancer was responsible for a whopping 9.6 million deaths in 2018.

In India, the estimated number of cases by 2025 is 15.7 lakhs being more prevalent in women. India witnessed 784,800 cancer deaths in 2018 and 1.16 million new cancer cases. 

According to WHO, some of the cancers are the most common. Lung cancer, Breast cancer, Colorectal cancer, Prostate cancer, Skin cancer, and Stomach cancer tops the list. 

Lung cancer, Colorectal cancer, Stomach cancer, Liver cancer, and Breast cancer are the most fatal and cause the maximum number of deaths.

 

Causes of Cancer

Cancer can be a genetic problem, but various external factors can lead to malignant tumors’ development. Consumption of tobacco leads to approximately 22% percent of cancer deaths.

External factors such as ionizing radiation, carcinogenic foods, biological carcinogens, electromagnetic fields, and high BMI are responsible for most cancer cases. 

In low and middle-income countries, hepatitis and human papillomavirus (HPV)– cancer-causing infections are responsible for 25% of the cancer cases. 

 

Cancer Precautions

Avoiding risk-based factors can bring down the cancer cases by 30-50%. Key risk factors such as consumption of carcinogenic food (red meat, processed food, alcohol, etc.), tobacco, obesity, alcohol, and unhealthy diets can be avoided and can bring down many cancer cases caused by external factors. Vaccination against HPV and hepatitis B virus is an equally important factor in fighting cancer. Avoiding occupational hazards, exposure to ultraviolet and ionizing radiation is easy and can significantly change the world’s cancer scenario. 

Some of the cancers can be prevented by vaccination. Cervical cancer is one of them. Vaccination of cervical cancer is readily available across India. Hematology BMT Institute International vaccinates women against the cancer of the cervix.

 

 

Cancer Detection and Diagnosis

Early detection and treatment can save lives. PAP smears for cervical cancer, mammography for breast cancer are some of the screenings done once a year to know any abnormal developments.

Dr. S.K Gupta, the founder of Hematology BMT Institute International, says “Cancer is a word, not a sentence. You can be a victim of cancer or a survivor of cancer. It’s a mindset.” He believes that timely diagnosis can save hundreds of lives from cancer. In his 15 years of experience, he witnessed several cases where early diagnosis could decrease cancer chances. 

In 2021, Hematology BMT Institute International aims to achieve #FitIndia2021. A year to concentrate on oneself, reflect on our health and lifestyle. With #FitIndia2021, Hematology BMT Institute International promotes the prevention of diseases, identification through timely diagnosis and regular tests. #FitIndia2021 embarks the beginning of a healthy and safe lifestyle for everyone. 

patient testimonial

CARE AND CURE: THE STORY OF AN 11 YEAR OLD BLOOD CANCER PATIENT AT HBII

Hematology and BMT Institute International is a Hospital that specialises in the treatment of all forms of blood, bone marrow, lymph nodes, spleen disorders, cancer and non cancer disorders providing a wide variety of programs spanning from inpatient day care clinics, a blood bank and laboratory to an outpatient facility. HBII has successfully treated many patients, and Mir Mohammed Shoaib Ali is one of them. This is his story.

A child and his journey towards recovery

Mir Mohammed Shoaib Ali was diagnosed with cancer at a very young age in October 2019. It all started with a mild cough, cold and fever. Even after taking a lot of antibiotics and iron supplements, there was no difference in his health condition. After several CBC tests, it was revealed that the child had blood cancer. Both the parents were shattered but, despite the setback, they mustered the courage to assess the situation further in terms of the treatment, the procedure, and the risks factors behind it. Even after visiting a lot of doctors, they were not satisfied with the suggested course of treatment. It was after some research that they finally came to know about Hematology and BMT Institute International and met Dr S. K. Gupta. 

Dr. Gupta sat them down patiently and explained to them the treatment in detail; its phases, the procedures, medications, the possible outcomes of chemotherapy and its side effects. He explained to them that the treatment duration would be difficult for the family, and stressed on the measures they could take to overcome the difficult time. 

Firstly, the doctor recommended doing all the blood tests like CBC, LFT, RFT, CUE, blood and urine cultures, CRP, Serology and immunology test, PT, INR, and aPTT.  He then started giving the child antibiotics through IV-fluids to overcome the growth of the disease. The doctor cleared the bacterial infection from the blood and on 14th October advised the patient and his family to go for chemo-port installation procedure along with CSF/body fluid analysis for hematopoietic malignancy.

During the first phase of treatment, the doctor scheduled the Induction therapy where the child was kept on VCR, DOXO and IT-MTX in his protocol with intensive care and treatment for two months. In this time, the patient’s blasts disappeared (from 72% to 0%), haemoglobin level increased, and most importantly, TLC counts increased to 9.611 from 1.6/ml. 

All the necessary precautions and measures were taken to make sure that the boy would have the strength to overcome cancer. He conducted regular checkups, blood tests and also charted out a diet plan which was rich in proteins, so that the kid would have the strength during chemotherapy sessions.  Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr Gupta successfully treated the child without causing any sort of complications. 

There was a huge difference in the boy’s health after he started receiving treatment from Dr S K Gupta. The ecstatic mother said,  

I would recommend Dr S K Gupta sir, who is highly experienced, thoroughly professional and an expert in treating blood-related disorders. I must say he is one of the top hematologists in the world.” 

Dr S.K.Gupta is highly experienced in treating blood related disorders. He specialises in treating blood, bone marrow, lymph nodes and spleen disorders. He is very compassionate towards his patients and their families. He listens to all queries patiently, and provides knowledge in the most simpler terms. He is one of the renowned hematologists in India who practices at the Hematology and BMT Institute International (HBII) in Hyderabad. 

HBII is one of the leading hematology and bone marrow transplant hospitals that offers all treatments related to blood disorders. The hemato-oncologists at HBII are well-versed in stem cell transplantation as well. Nurses and support staff are qualified to work with people of all ages suffering from blood disorders. HBII  provides world-class hemato-oncology treatment with a high success rate. The hospital is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and manned by the trained and dedicated staff. 

If you or anyone in your social circle suffer from any symptoms that indicate blood-related disorders, then contact us. Call +91 77802 97660 or visit the website to know more: https://hematologybmt.com/

 

Peidatrics | Children’s BMT in Hyderabad

What is a Pediatric | Children’s Hematologist/Oncologist?

If your child or teens are facing some kind of blood disease or cancer, our Hematology and BMT Doctors are fully experienced pediatric hematologists/oncologists who have the experience and qualifications to evaluate and treat your child or teen. The Best care of children or teens with blood diseases and cancer is learned from advanced training and experience in practice. Pediatric hematologists/oncologists treat children and teens from birth through young adulthood.

Children and teens are not just small adults. Their bodies are growing and have unique medical needs. They usually express their concerns differently than adults do. They cannot always answer medical questions and are not always able to be patient and cooperative.

Pediatric hematologists/oncologists know how to examine and treat young children and teens in a way that makes them relaxed and cooperative. Most pediatric hematologists/oncologists’ offices are arranged and decorated with children and teens in mind.

Ours internationally recognized pediatric hematologists/oncologists and hematopathologists are diagnosing and treating all types of pediatric blood cancers.

To find the best pediatrician or Pediatrics Bone Marrow Transplant in Hyderabad click here.

lymph nodes specialist doctors in Hyderabad

Lymph Nodes Specialist Doctors in Hyderabad

Dr. S.K. Gupta is one of the top Lymph Nodes Specialist Doctor in Hyderabad. He is a renowned Hematologist in India with extensive experience of over 15 years in the field of Hematology.

Swollen lymph nodes usually occur as a result of exposure to bacteria or viruses. When swollen lymph nodes are caused by an infection, this is known as lymphadenitis. Rarely, swollen lymph nodes are caused by cancer.

When your lymph nodes first swell, you might notice:

  1. Swollen lymph nodes that maybe the size of a pea or kidney bean, or even larger
    Tender and painful lymph nodes
  2. Depending on the cause of your swollen lymph nodes, other signs, and symptoms.
  3. General swelling of lymph nodes throughout your body — which may indicate an infection, such as HIV or mononucleosis, or an immune disorder, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis
  4. Swollen limb, possibly indicating lymph system blockage caused by swelling in a lymph node too far under your skin to feel
  5. Hardened, fixed, rapidly growing nodes, indicating a possible tumor Fever Runny nose, sore throat, fever and other indications of an upper respiratory infection Night sweats

The most common cause of swollen lymph nodes is an Infection, particularly a viral infection, such as the common cold. However, there are other types of infections, including Parasitic and Bacterial, and other possible causes of swollen lymph nodes.

lymph nodes specialist doctors in Hyderabad

            lymph nodes specialist doctors in Hyderabad

They include:

Common infections:

  • Strep throat
  • Measles
  • Ear infections
  • Infected (abscessed) tooth
  • Mononucleosis
  • Skin or wound infections, such as cellulitis or erysipelas
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) — the virus that causes AIDS

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