According to the American Cancer Society, over 1.9 million Americans were diagnosed with new cancer cases in 2021. Studies show that 1 in 2 women, and 1 in 3 men are projected to develop some form of cancer in their lifetimes. These statistics are sobering and make it evident that most, if not all families living in the United States today, will have their own or a loved one’s lives directly affected by cancer.
Cancer is defined as a disease caused by the development and growth of abnormal cells in a person’s body. Unless diagnosed early or treated in a timely manner, the spread of cancerous cells can be fatal. When people are fortunate to have cancer diagnosed early, many can live a long and healthy life post-treatment. Some, cancer free and others who must manage their cancer with medication, treatment, and constant monitoring. There are almost 18 million cancer patients and survivors in the US in 2022 and most were diagnosed several years ago.
The following tables identify the different types of common cancers affecting Americans today.
5 Main Types of Cancer
Most common type of cancer. Affects organs and glands. Ex. breast cancer, (non melanoma) skin cancer, lung cancer, etc.
Rare type of cancer that develops in bones or soft connective tissues like fat, muscles, blood vessels, etc.
Extremely serious skin cancer that forms in the cells that pigment the skin.
Cancer that affects the white blood cells and begins in the lymph system. Most common types are Hodgkin Lymphoma and non-Hodgkin Lymphoma
Cancer that affects the body’s blood-forming cells and causes an excess amount of white blood cells to form in the body.
Note: Data and statistics based on National Cancer Institute Research and Findings
Stage of cancer is determined by the spread of cancerous cells in a person’s body when they are diagnosed. Determining the stage of cancer is necessary to help figure out next steps in terms of treatment, care plan, and the patient’s prognosis. Medical professionals use 3 primary factors to determine the stages of cancer – the size of the tumor, spread to lymph nodes, and whether the cancer has metastasized to different parts of the body. The following infographic details the 4 common stages of cancer. Please note that this is a generalized list of common symptoms and treatments. Diagnoses, treatments and symptoms vary by cancer and are highly individualized.
In-home care for those living with cancer depends on many variables – from the type of cancer to the stage of cancer – no 2 scenarios are the same. Additional factors include the availability of family caregivers or a local support network to assist the person with cancer on a daily or weekly basis. The information detailed above reflects the many benefits of having in-home care at every stage of the treatment process, if possible. Advanced stage cancer patients can live for many years (in some cases even 5-10 years) with treatment, care, and support.
The best way to understand if in-home care is the optimal solution in your scenario is to review the responsibilities and care required by most individuals living with cancer.
Most people undergoing treatment for cancer typically live at home and can access their medical appointments, medication, care, and minor treatments (e.g. wound care via trained in-home care professionals. This reduces their exposure to germs in their immunocompromised state with non-essential hospital visits and allows them to continue treatment and care from the comfort and safety of their home. It also allows for more emotional support like friends and family members who can visit or provide meals and help with ease.