It's Blood Cancer Awareness Month throughout September and we wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the stats and symptoms in case they’re helpful to anyone reading.
We are not doctors, and all of this information is in the public domain, but if we hope that in sharing it, it could help someone to get a diagnosis a little earlier.
Blood cancer statistics
There are multiple different types of blood cancer, all of which affect the body's blood cells. Blood cancer in general is the fifth most common cancer in the UK, with over 41,000 people being diagnosed with it every year. There are about 250,000 people living with blood cancer in the UK. One in every 16 men and one in every 22 women will develop it at some point in their lives. It is also the most common type of childhood cancer.
The symptoms of any cancer can be varied between one person and another. While most of the time symptoms are likely to be nothing serious, if you feel as though something isn't right it's always best to check with your doctor to put your mind at rest. That said, the most common symptoms of blood cancer include a combination of the following:
Unexplained weight loss
Unexplained bruising or bleeding
Lumps or swellings
Shortness of breath
Persistent or recurrent infections
Unexplained fever (37.5°C or above)
Unexplained rash or itchy skin
Pain in your bones, joints or abdomen
Tiredness that doesn’t improve with rest
Paleness, particularly when the skin under your lower eyelid looks white instead of pink
The sooner you have a diagnosis for blood cancer, the quicker you can begin treatment. The recommended treatment will depend on the type of blood cancer you have, your overall health and your personal choices.
Monitoring blood cancer
Sometimes, when people have a slow-growing blood cancer, the initial response is to monitor it. Sometimes there is no need for treatment at all. That's not the same as saying it can't be treated, it's when the cancer is not causing troubling symptoms and where doctors believe that treatment won't be of great benefit.
Chemotherapy for blood cancer
Chemotherapy is sometimes recommended to treat blood cancer, which can either be in the form of an intravenous drip or tablets and is generally offered in cycles.
Stem cell transplants for blood cancer
Stem cell transplants are sometimes offered to replace the ones in your body with new ones. Blood cells start out as stem cells and blood cancer happens where something goes wrong in their development. This treatment involves a high dose of chemotherapy to destroy existing blood cells before replacing bone marrow with healthy ones.
Spa treatments and your cancer journey
All cancer treatments have their side effects that doctors will be able to offer advice on.
From our perspective, spas are certainly not going to fix all problems, but with properly trained spa therapists and the right products, they can help to ease some side effects of cancer treatments and to provide support on your cancer journey.
For example, the right type of massage has been shown to help ease pain, improve mood and help with sleeplessness. Meanwhile, products from brands like Jennifer Young help to ease some of the skincare side effects of cancer treatment.
If you would like to find out more about spas where therapists are trained to provide the best support on your cancer journey, you can follow the link to our Safe Hands for Cancer experiences, or read more articles on this blog.
We love complementary therapies - they're enjoyable, they're relaxing, they make us feel good. However, could the impact of treatments ranging from massage, to reflexology and reiki have a greater impact on the nation's health and wellbeing?
Spabreaks.com is now a multi award-winning spa booking agency and business, but that isn’t what we’re most proud of. Our motivation is about providing the best experiences for spa goers, and also making sure everyone feels welcome and able to access the spa industry. Here are some of the ways we have been working to make wellbeing more accessible and even more enjoyable.
It's Mouth Cancer Action month and we wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the stats and symptoms in case they’re helpful to anyone reading. We are not doctors, and all of this information is in the public domain, but if we hope that in sharing it, it could help someone to get a diagnosis a little earlier.