About Thymus Cancer
Thymus cancers are exceptionally uncommon. In fact, it’s one of the rarest cancers today, which can make them quite difficult to detect until the cancer spreads in later stages, thus contributing to lower survival rates. The symptoms of thymoma can be so subtle that by the time diagnosis takes place, cancer treatment and therapy may be less effective.
Where is Thymus Cancer located?
The thymus is a small organ that sits directly behind the sternum in the chest’s frontal region (and in front of the heart). It’s composed of three parts, and cancer cells can form in any of the regions, as demonstrated in clinical trials.
- Medulla – Inside part of thymus.
- Cortex – Layer that surrounds the medulla.
- Capsule – Thin layer that covers the thymus.
How Do the Cancer Cells Impact your Body?
Since the thymus plays a crucial role in regulating the body’s immune system and staving off infection and disease for long-term survival, thymus cancer negatively impacts a person’s ability to stay healthy. As it worsens, the cancer cells can spread to local regions, wreaking havoc in those organs.
Are There Different Types of Thymus Cancer?
There are a few strains of thymus cancer, including:
- Thymoma and thymic tumors – Account for more than 95% of all thymus gland cancer cases. They form as tumors that come from thymic epithelial cells.
- Hodgkin’s Disease and Non-Hodgkin’s – Cancer forms in the lymphocytes—immune system cells, necessary for long-term survival against diseases, bacteria, and infection.
Thymus Cancer Statistics
According to the American Cancer Society, thymic tumors are the most common tumor cells that occur in the frontal region of the chest cavity but are still extraordinarily rare. A mediastinal tumor are relatively uncommon and occur in the area of the middle of the chest between the sternum and the spinal column. These tumors are either benign or can develop into thymic cancer. Only 1.5 cases of thymic cancer are diagnosed for every million people in the U.S. per year. That ends up being approximately 400 cases per year.
Causes and Risk Factors
The exact reason why thymic cancers occur is not known. We do however know that there are two risk factors that increase the likelihood of developing the disease. They are:
- Age – It most commonly occurs in adults over the age of 70.
- Ethnicity – It happens more frequently in Asians, Pacific Islanders, and black people.
Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging
Signs and Symptoms of Thymus Cancer
Signs and symptoms of thymoma are uncommon in the early stages. Despite, some signs that may manifest include:
- Bloody cough
- Chest pain
- Loss of appetite
- Shortness of breath
- Trouble swallowing
- Weight loss
The Different Stages of Thymus Cancer
The vast majority of cancer strains are graded on a scale of 0 to 4. The stages for thymus cancer go as follows:
- Stage 0 – Carcinoma in situ, a small potentially malignant or benign tumor forms.
- Stage I – Tumor grows into the nearby fatty tissues of the thymus. It has neither reached local lymph nodes, nor spread to other regions of the body. At this stage, the cancer is minimally invasive.
- Stage II – Tumor grows through the nearby fatty tissue and into pericardium. It hasn’t spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
- Stage III – Tumor grows into nearby tissues or organs, including the lungs, the blood vessels, or the phrenic nerve. It hasn’t spread to lymph nodes or other regions of the body.
- Stage IV – Tumor has grown into local tissue and organs. It has spread to multiple lymph nodes and moved to other regions of the body.
Alternative / Natural Treatment for Thymoma
At ITC, we believe that there is a better, more effective, and safer way to treat cancer. Rather than resorting to standard cancer treatment and therapy methods like chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgical resection. We provide our patients with an innovative thymus cancer alternative treatment plan that focuses on boosting your immune system’s natural ability to fight various forms of thymic carcinoma or advanced thymoma, rather than destroying it.
When you stay with us, you consult with Dr. Bautista who performs a rigorous analysis of your unique case, condition, and staging. From there, he creates a custom thymus cancer alternative treatment plan that can be adjusted daily to ensure the best results. As you progress, therapies will be added or removed when deemed necessary.
So, if you’re searching for a holistic battle plan or a targeted therapy treatment, we’ve helped hundreds of other cancer patients successfully fight their illness, by implementing the most minimally invasive treatments possible. We can help you too. Give us a call, and we’ll set up your consultation today!
- American Cancer Society. Key Statistics about Thymus Cancer. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/thymus-cancer/about/key-statistics.html
- National Cancer Institute. Thymoma and Thymic Carcinoma Treatment. https://www.cancer.gov/types/thymoma/patient/thymoma-treatment-pdq
- MedlinePlus. Thymus Cancer. https://medlineplus.gov/thymuscancer.html
- Stony Brook Medicine. FAQs about Mediastinal Tumors and Their Management
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