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Esophageal cancer is a type of cancer that develops in the cells of the esophagus. Esophagus is an organ that connects the throat and the stomach. Its main function is to transfer the food and liquid from the throat to stomach. This type of cancer does not occur that often but it is problematic as the situation only gets worse as time passes. The chances of recovery and survival are a lot higher if the cancer is discovered in the early stages. However, that does not occur that often and that is why the outlook is rarely good.

Esophageal cancer rupture

Esophageal rupture is a medical term for a tear in the esophagus. This condition needs immediate medical treatment as it is considered to be an emergency. Cancer is only one of the factors that can lead to ruptured esophagus. This condition sometimes appears like a heart attack as it leads to chest pain. When the tear is present, various contents from the esophagus can leak into the chest cavity and lead to certain chemical injuries and bacterial infections. Abscess is a possibility as well. Saliva, food and vomit are only some of the things that may leak from the tear in the esophagus. The usual treatment for this kind of a problem includes surgery that will repair the tear and the removal of any esophageal content that may have leaked into the chest cavity. Antibiotics are used because of the bacterial infections. Antibiotics can both prevent and cure these infections. In some situations the organ can end up severely damaged and may require the removal of either a part of the whole esophagus, if necessary.

Cancer of the esophagus is one of the causes of tear in the esophagus. Apart from it, there are several more factors that can lead to that condition like forceful vomiting, ingestion of a foreign object, ingestion of lye or some other corrosive chemical, infection, ulcer, an injury of the esophagus and an accidental injury like insertion of tubes or some other instrument during a medical procedure.

Preventing this condition is possible. Parents need to keep small objects and household chemicals out of children’s reach. Any disorders that lead to severe vomiting and nausea need to be treated immediately. When the patient comes to the hospital complaining about the symptoms that point to esophageal tear, the doctor will order a chest x-ray in order to properly diagnose the condition.

Surgical procedures are performed in all situations apart from those where the tear is a tinny one. Tinny tears are usually treated medically and the patient will not be allowed to eat. Oral suction is sometimes required. The fluids and nutrients are administered intravenously in order for dehydration and malnutrition to be prevented. Bacterial infections are a possibility as well and that is the reason why intravenous antibiotics are administered.

Other complications of esophageal cancer

When cancer develops in the esophagus, it will block the passage of food to the stomach, erode the lining of the organ, lead to bleeding and even play a part in the development of fistulas between the esophagus and the trachea. Fistulas are huge channels that normally separate the organs. According to the data, men are affected by this type of cancer three times more than women. Men older than 50 years of age are most prone to this type of cancer. Due to the fact that diagnosis of cancer of the esophagus does not occur until the cancer has progressed, the treatment usually focuses on making the patient as comfortable as possible and relieving the symptoms.

The experts are still unsure about the actual cause of cancer of the esophagus. However, risk factors exist and it is vital to avoid them in order to decrease the risk of developing cancer. Use of tobacco and overconsumption of alcohol are two of the most often seen risk factors. The good thing is that these risk factors can be avoided. Men should not drink more than two alcoholic beverages per day and women should not drink more than one. Swallowing lye or some other corrosive chemical also increase the risk of esophageal cancer. Drinking hot beverages on a daily basis can increase the chance of developing this type of cancer. Certain condition like gastroesophageal reflux disease and Barrett esophagus are also risk factors of cancer of the esophagus.

When diagnosing the disease, the doctor will perform an x-ray after the patient has swallowed barium. Barium is swallowed so that a clear image of the esophagus is created. Endoscopy and biopsy may be ordered too. When diagnosed, the doctor will come up with a treatment plan, along with the patient. Two essential factors that are considered when the plan is being made are the stage of the cancer and the general health of the patient. The often used treatment options are surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

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